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Verfasser: Saleski 

Titel: Famous musicians 

Signatur: Jud. 5224 


nbn:de:hebis:30-1 8001 5224000 


Famous Musicians 


Wandering Race 


of a 

ndering Race 








copyright 1927 
By Gdal Saleski 

All rights reserved 

FKiiml'GKT A. 

Printcd in the United States 
The Barnks Printing Co., Inc, 
Nf.w Yokk City 




The author wishes to make clear at the very beginning that the 
words "Jew" and "Jewish" are not used in their religious or na- 
tional sense. The method of approach is purely a racial one. He 
has isolated all these musicians into this one volume f or the simple 
reason that all of them have in their veins that fìre to which the 
Jewish prophets gave utterance in the time of Jerusalem's glory. 

He realizes that a number of those included in this volume, 
though reputed to be of Jewish origin, are now of a different faith. 
He is not concerned with their religion, past or present, but solely 
with their racial roots, as in the case of the Damrosch family. 
Dr. Leopold Damrosch, f ather of Walter J. and Frank H., was born 
of Jewish parents but later was baptized in the Christian faith. 

Although attempts at recording the rich contribution of cer- 
tain members of the Jewish race to the world's arts and culture 
have been made before, no book concerning itself exclusively with 
musicians of Jewish origin has, to the author's knowledge, ever 
been written. And yet it would seem that a race which has given 
to the world so many outstanding musicians, including practically 
every great pianist of the nineteenth century and of the present 
one, with the exception of such fìgures as Liszt, Paderewski, and 
a few others, certainly deserves a book to itself . The reader's con- 
viction will strengthen itself on that subject when he glances 
through these pages and sees the imposing array of violinists, 
conductors, composers, etc. The author takes courage from the 
fact that similar books which have been and still continue to be 
published have found their readers, and as a rule have had to be 
published in many editions. He consequently feels that in compil- 
ing this volume he is filling a defìnite want. 

In any case, this book will, in part at least, be a distinct contri- 
bution to the critico-biographical literature of music, inasmuch as 
certain names and facts will here appear between covers for the 
first time. These f acts and anecdotes have been caref ully collected 
during the author's travels as soloist and as member of several 
large orchestral organizations of the world, either by direct con- 
tact with the personality described, or as first-hand information 
from members of the f amily, associating artists, etc. 

For the biographies of musicians now dead, the author used as 
a basis the newest and most reliable sources. 

In this book the author lays no claims to being exhaustive. For 
the purpose of this volume, he has concerned himself only with out- 




standing musicians. It is a pity that a more comprehensive vol- 
ume, including a great many other names that could be classified 
under this heading, could not, for practical reasons, be made. 

The circumstances leading up to the writing of this book are in 
themselves not devoid of interest. The author began his musical 
career in Russia and Western Europe, where he was a fellow-stu- 
dent with most of these Jewish young men whose art has since 
taken the world by storm, at a time when in the Bohemian and 
intellectual Russian-Jewish circles there blossomed forth a new 
and powerful racial consciousness. That consciousness led to the 
establishment of certain aims, the principal one of which was that 
the composer-musician of Jewish origin could achieve much greater 
results in his work if he were to identify himself more closely with 
the genius of his race. The author has carried on the work of his 
companions by collecting the necessary data for the compilation of 
this volume. Such a lexicon cannot but serve as a guide and inspira- 
tion to the numerous young Jewish musicians of our day, and to 
those yet to come. 

Nearly three-quarters of a century has passed since the poet 
and composer Richard Wagner wrote his brochure Judaism in 
Music. This volume was undoubtedly prompted by his jealousy 
of the popular successes of Meyerbeer, Halevy and others. Facts 
have since disproved all his accusations, and by the irony of fate, 
some of his staunchest champions then and since have been Jews. 
For example, it was Taussig who raised the three hundred thousand 
thalers for the erection of Bayreuth Temple, and Leopold Dam- 
rosch has battled in Wagner's cause in America against appar- 
ently insurmountable odds. Wagner in his brochure wanted to 
proye that the Jewish composers have impregnated music with 
their Judaic spirit (sic), and that their compositions stand on a 
lower plane than those of the pure-blooded Aryans,— the same 
Aryan (rather Nordic) myth that has since come to the front in 

There is only one grain of truth in Wagner's accusation. Jew- 
ìsh musicians have undoubtedly contributed their mite to the 
world's music. Musicians of Jewish origin express themselves 
just as harmoniously and melodiously as the great majority of their 
Aryan brothers. 

Without attempting to give the Jews priority in creative music, 
such works as Mendelssohn's "Elijah" can well stand alongside of 
Handel's and Bach's best. But when we come to the field of inter- 
pretative music, one is forced to recognize that it is the Jewish 
musicians who excel both in numbers and in quality. 

This volume has been undertaken in face of the fact that the 
contribution of the Jews to the progress of music has been mini- 
mized. At the same time the author is fully aware that in the 



realm of music there are no artificial racial and religious divisions. 
In this realm there reigns only talent and genius, and here there 
exists no monopoly by individual races or nationalities, as some 
woulcl have us believe. 

It is the author's sincere wish that this book be graciously ac- 
cepted not alone by the Jewish reader, but by his Christian brother 
as well, since, as we have already said, it is not merely a specialized 
volume, but brings forward much that is new and of general inter- 
est and value. . 

The author sincerely hopes that omissions and uncertamties 
which have inevitably occurrecl here will be rectified in a future 

In conclusion, the author wishes to express his deep mdebted- 
ness to the main sources wherefrom he drew his material, includ- 
ing the managers of the younger generation of artists, who have 
furnished him with valuable data; to the relatives, parents and 
friends of the artists from whom the author has obtained many 
personal anecdotes; to the artists themselves, with whom he 
has had many interesting and memorable interviews; to Mr. 
Maurice Alterman and Miss Celia Krieger, who have given so much 
of their time and energy to translating, copying and preparing this 
volume, and in particular to his dear friends, Emanuel Goldman, 
Hymie Ross, Barney Anderson and Louis Meyer, for their aid m 
publishing this book. 

New York City, September, 1927. 




Bbndix, Victor Emanuel 2 

Binuer, Abraham Wolp 10 

Bizet, George 3 

Bloch, Ernest 5 

* Bruch, Max 9 

Brull, Ignatz 10 

Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Mario... 90 

Copland, Aaron 11 

cowen, slr frederick ii 12 

David, Ferdinand 17 

Dukas, Paul 14 

Engel, Julius 15 

Fall, Leo 19 

Feinberg, Samuel 18 

Franchetti, Baron Alberto... 21 

Friml, Rudolph 20 

Gedalge, Andre 23 

Gernsheim, Frederick 24 

Gershwin, George 25 

Gniessin, Michael Fabionovitch 26 

Goldfaden, Abraham 27 

Goldmark, Karl 29 


Gruenberg, Louis 22 

^ Halevy, Jacques Elli 31 

Hiller, Ferdinand 23 

Jacobi, Frederick 16 

Jadassohn, Solomon 13 

Kalman, Emerich 32 

Korngold, Erich Wolfgang... 33 

Kreyn, Alexander Abramovitch 36 

' Lewandowski, Louis 50 

^Mahler, Gustav 38 

^ Mendelssohn, Arnold 48 

^ Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Felix 45 

^Meyerbeer, Giacomo 53 

Milh'aud, Darius 49 

Milner, Moses Michail 58 

moscheles, ignatz 56 

Moszkowsky, Moritz 43 

Ochs, Siegfried 57 



Poldowski, Jean Paul 58 

Ravel, Maurice 59 

Rogers, Bernard 65 


Rosovsky, Solomon 62 

Rubinstein, Anton 66 

"Russian-Jewish" School of 

Composers, The Young 97 

Saint-Saens, Camille 70 

Saminsky, Lazare 74 

schaefer, jacob 77 

schonberg, arnold 78 

Steinberg, Maximilian 85 

Strauss, Oscar 84 

sulzer, solomon 86 

Tansman, Alexander 88 

Von Zemlinsky, Alexander ... 95 

Weil, Kurt 92 

Weinberg, Jakob 93 

Weiner, Leo 87 

Wellesz, Egon 91 

Weprik, Alexander 92 

Zhitomirsky, Alexander 94 

Zucca, Manna 96 


Altschuler, Modest 101 

Blech, Leo 102 

Bodanzky, Artur 103 

Colonne, Edouard Judas 106 

Cooper, Emil 105 

Damrosch, Frank Heino 110 

Damrosch, Leopold 107 

Damrosch, Walter Johannes. . lll 

Dessoff, Felix Otto 101 

dobrowen, issai 117 

Finston, Nathaniel 120 


Fried, Oscar 118 

Goldman, Edwin Franko 122 

golschmann, vladimir ...... 123 





Hasselmans, Louis 124 

Heller, Herman 461 

Hertz, Alfred . 460 


Jacchia, Agide 125 

Klemperer, Otto 127 


Koussevitzky, Serge 131 

Levy, Hermann 130 

Low, Leo 135 

Mendoza, David 136 


Pasowsky, Aaron 149 

Polacco, Giorgio 138 

Rapee, Erno 143 

Reiner, Fritz 141 



Rothwell, Walter Henry 147 


Shavitch, Vladimir 153 

Shteiman, Mischa 163 

Shteinberg, Ljov 156 

Smallens, Alexander 151 


Stern, Julius 155 

Stopak, Joseph 166 

Stransky, Joseph 152 

Talbot, Irvin 160 

Taube, Michael *159 

Volpe, Arnold 463 

Waghalter, Ignaz 166 

Walteb, Bruno 162 

Weiner, Lazar 161 


Zuro, Josiah 164 


Auer, Leopold 169 

Bachmann, Alberto Abraham. 173 

Bendix, Max 176 

Blinder, Naum 174 

Bloch, Alexander 173 

Brodsky, Adolpii 175 

Brown, Eddy 177 

Burgin, Richard 178 

Dushkin, Samuel 179 

Edlin, Louis 187 


Elman, Mischa 180 

Ernst, Heinrich Wilhelm 186 

Flesch, Carl 189 

Fradkin, Frederic 191 

Franko, Nahan 188 

Franko, Sam 188 

Gardner, Samuel 192 

Gordon, Jacques 194 

Gregorovitsch, Charles 193 

Grun, Jakob 195 

Gusikoff, Mishel 196 

Harmati, Sandor 203 

Hartmann, Arthur 196 

Hauser, Misca 204 

Heifetz, Jascha 198 

Hochstein, David 197 



Jacobsen, Sascha 208 

joachim, joseph 20ò 

kochanski, paul 211 

Kreisler, Fritz 213 

Kroll, William 210 

Laub, Ferdinand 217 

Lotto, Isidore 216 

Luboshutz, Lea 218 

Mannes, David 221 

Menuhin, Yehudi 219, 456 



Morini, Erika 224 

Mossel, Max 255 

Nachez, Tivador 227 

Partos, Stephan 232 

Petschnikoff, Alexander .... 229 



Pilzer, Maximilian 234 

Poliakin, Myron 235 

Polk, Rudolph 237 

Press, Michael 236 

Rappoldi, Edouard 238 

Remenyi, Edouard 242 

Rose, Arnold 244 

Rosen, Max 239 

Rubinstein, Erna 240 

Sametini, Leon 247 

Saslavsky, Alexander 247 

Schkolnik, Ilya 246 






Seidel, Toscha 251 

SlNGER, Eduard 254 

Spivakowski, Tossy 238 

Stassevitch, Paul 245 


Tas, Helen Teschner 256 

Weisbord, Mischa 257 

WlENIAWSICI, Henry 258 

Zeitlin, Ljef 265 





Beloussofp, Evsei 269 

Davidoff, Carl 270 

Feuermann, Emanuel 271 


Gerardy, Jean 274 

Grunfeld, Heinrich 275 

Hambourg, Boris 276 

Jacobs, Eduard 272 

Loevensohn, Marix 276 

Malkin, Joseph 277 

Mossel, Isaac 278 

Penha, Michael 278 


Popper, David 281 

Press, Joseph 280 

Sakom, Jacob 283 

Stutschewsky, Joachim 282 

Van Lier, Jacques 283 

Welleuson, Mila 284 


achron, isidor 289 

Adler, Clarence 289 

Ashman, Gregory 290 

Bauer, Harold 291 

Bay, Emanuel 290 

Bloomfield-Zeisler, Fanny . . . 294 

Borowsky, Alexander 295 

Busoni, Ferruccio Benvenuto . 299 

Cherkassky, Shura 302 

Chotzinoff, Samuel 304 

Drouckeu, Sandra 305 


Epstein, Richard 305 


Friedheim, Arthur 306 

Friedman, Ignaz 307 

Gabrilowitsch, Ossip 310 

Galston, Gottfried 313 

Godowsky, Leopold 314 

Goldenweiser, Alexander 314 

Goldsmidt, Otto 321 

Gradova, Gitta 319 

Grunfeld, Alfred 321 

Gunzburg, Mark 323 

Hambourg, Mark 323 

Herz, Heinrich (Henri) 322 

Hess, Myra 324 

Hilsberg, Ignace 326 

Horowitz, Vladimir 325 

Isserlis, Julius 327 

Jonas, Alberto 328 

Joseffy, Rafael 330 

Kaufman, Harry 331 

Kreutzer, Leonid 332 

Lambert, Alexander 333 

Landowska, Wanda 335 

Lerner, Tina 336 

Levitzki, Mischa 338 

Levy, Heniot 342 

Lhevinne, Josef 343 

Liebling, George 347 

Mero, Yolanda 349 

Mirovitch, Alfred 356 

Moiseivitsch, Benno 351 

Munz, Mieczyslaw 354 

Ornstbin, Leo 35,7 

Pachmann, Vladimir De 367 

Pouishnoff, Leff 373 

Rabinowitsch, Max 374 

Reisenberg, Nadia 380 

Rosenthal, Maurycz (Moritz) 375 
Rubinstein, Arthur 381 


Rubinstein, Nicholai 378 

Samuel, Harold 382 

Saperton (Saperstein), David. 381 

Sauer, Emil 384 

Schnabel, Arthur 385 

Schnitzer, Germaine 386 

Schor, David 384 

Sklauevski, Alexander 388 




Sokolsky-Freid, Sara 391 

szreter, karol 387 

Tausig, Karl 389 

Wengerova, Isabella 390 



Bloch, Max 395 

Braslau, Sophie 395 

Dalmores, Charles 397 

Dalossy, Ellen 401 

Demuth, Leopolu 400 

Gabor, Arnold 405 

Gluck, Alma 404 


Henschel, Isidor Georg (Sir 

George) 406 

Jadlowker, Hermann 407 

Kalisch, Paul 408 

Kipnis, Alexander 409 

Kremer, Isa 411 

Kurz, Selma 401 

Lasalle, Jean Louis 418. 

Lashanska, Hulda 412 

Lehmann, Lilli 414 

Lucca, Pauline 413 


Meitschik, Anna 417 

Pasta, Giuditta Negri 419 

Raisa, Rosa 423 

Rappold, Marie 426 

Renaud, Maurice .. 420 


Saenger, Oscar . , 428 

Samoilopp, Lazar S 430 

Schumann-Heink, Ernestine.. 431 
Schwarz, Joseph 429 


Slobodskaya, Oda 427 


Strakoscii, Maurice 437 

Tartakoff, Joaciiim 438 

Weil, Hermann 441 

Wolfe, James 439 


The Cherniavsky Trio 447 

Bellison, Simeon 445 

Gusikoff, Mikhail Joseph 449 


Gdal Saleski 451 


<x4^« 9. //M> y 


Joseph Achron, who is considered one of the most significant com- 
posers in the fìeld of Jewish music, was born on May 1, 1886, m 
the small town of Losdseje (Government of Suvalki), Russia. His 
father was a Jewish merchant m that 

Even at the age of two, little Joseph 
showed a remarkable aptitude for music. 
His f ather presented him with a violin of 
his own making and taught him the rudi- 
ments of music. When he was fìve, his 
f amily moved to Warsaw, where he began 
taking regular violin lessons, fìrst with 
his f ather, and later uncler Mikhalovitsch. 
He was not yet seven when he composed 
his fìrst violin piece. A year later he 
appeared at a benefit concert given by 
Counts Radzivilov and Tyszkiewicz. _ A 
concert tour through Russia was the im- 
mediate result of this first appearance. 

He continued studying the violin, under Professor Lotto from 
1894-99. In 1911, Achron, together with Rosowsky, Gniessm, 
Tomars Krein, and M. Milner, founded the Society for Hebrew 
Folk Music in Petrograd. From 1913 to 1916, Achron was at the 
head of the master classes in violin and chamber music at the 
Royal Conservatory in Kharkov. His career as teacher and com- 
poser was interrupted for one and one-half years when he was 
drafted into the Russian Army. He reached the peak of his career 
as composer in 1918 when his sonata for violin and piano appeared. 

Igor Gliebov, the famous Russian critic, said of Achron: 
"He is a lyric composer. He builds vibrating forms and passionate 
pictures of dramatic intensity. He awakens the young musician's 
interest by his individualistic attainments in polyphonic music, 
which he unites with an effective and expressive idiom. His music 
is emotionally dynamic, a quality that is lacking in most of the other 
lyric composers. I have seldom met with such mastery as that 
shown in his second violin sonata." 

It is also of interest to note what was said of him by two other 
known critics, Sabaneyeff of Moscow and Karatygin of Petrograd, 
in which two cities his second violin sonata and other works were 
perf ormed in November, 1922, arousing great interest. 

Karatygin says: "As violinist and composer of serious cham- 
ber music, Spohr was a great exception (excluding, of course, 


Famous Musicians of a WandeHng Race 

Corelli and Tartini). The other exception is Achron. Achron the 
violinist is a worthy rival of Achron the composer." 

Sabaneyeff says : "I consider Achron a mature and signifìcant 
musician in his masterful artistry. He follows simultaneously two 
paths. He works on Jewish folk lore, enriching the Jewish reper- 
toire with brilliant and indiviclualistic compositions, and he writes 
signifìcant music that has nothing of the Jewish tonality. In his 
latter period the two paths meet. ,, 

The f amous historian E. Braudo says of him : "As a creator 
and interpreter Achron occupies a special place in our musical life. 
His art is deep and concentrated." 

During 1922-1924 Achron lived in Berlin, making occasional 
trips to Egypt, Palestine and other countries. He moved to New 
York, where he is now living, in January, 1925. 

^ Achron's opuses of independent works number up to sixty at 
this time, but he also made a similar number of arrangements of 
Jewish themes. Of particular interest is his incidental music, 
written for orchestra and chorus, to the dramatic works of Maeter- 
linck, Perez, Rochè, and others. These were performed by the 
Moscow Kamerny Theatre. Of great importance are also his 
works for orchestra, choruses, string quartet, two sonatas, four 
suites, and smaller pieces for violin and orchestra (or piano), 
'cello compositions, and songs. 

In December, 1925, his works were performed in New York by 
the Stringwood ensemble and the Stony-Point Ensemble, at special 

Achron's works are published by the Universal, Juwal Verlag 
(Berlin, Palestine), Belaieff, Schirmer, Fischer, Russian Musical 
Edition, Zimmerman and Jurgenson. 


One of the most important Danish composers, pianists and teachers 
of the past twenty-five years is Victor Emanuel Bendix, who was 
born on May 17, 1851, in Denmark. He was a pupil at the Royal 
Conservatory of Copenhagen, and studied under Niels and W. Gade. 

Bendix belongs to the school of Neo-Romantics. He has written 
four symphonies, a concerto for piano and orchestra, a piano trio, 
and a series of songs and romanzas of great individuality. Some 
of his works have attained a place in the international repertory. 

He was conductor of the People's Concerts, the Philharmonic 
Concerts (1879-91), and the Danish Concert Society, from 1907 
to 1910. 

This illustrious musician, who died on January 5, 1926, was 
lamented as one of Scandinavia's most loved conductors, par- 
ticularly of choral works. 




IN the new French School, Bizet occupies a unique place. He was 
an innovator, inasmuch as his problem was to paint character by 
means of musical sounds and to bring about effects through tense 
clramatic situations. The famous com- 
poser of "Carmen" and "Jamilet" was 
born on October 25, 1838, in Paris. This 
unusual child could read notes at the age 
of four. He studied at the Paris Con- 
servatory, under the guidance of Mar- 
montellet, Halevy and Zimmerman. When 
the latter could not, f or some reason, give 
the boy his lesson, his place was taken by 
his famous son-in-law, Charles Gounod. 

In 1857 Bizet received the Prix de 
Rome, but even previous to this he re- 
ceived the first prize at the competition 
arranged by Jaques Offenbach for his 
operetta, "Le Docteur Miracle." After 
this Bizet undertook a journey through Italy for the purpose of 
studying. Upon his return he succeeded in staging his "Pearl 
Fishers" at the Theatre Lyrique, where it was indiiferently re- 
ceived. This did not discourage the composer. After a short in- 
terval there appeared his incidental music to Daudet's drama, 
"L'Arlesienne." In 1825 he appeared with his famous "Carmen," 
which, at the beginning unsuccessf ul in France, was very cordially 
received in other countries. 

Bizet's music has retained to this day its beauty, originality and 
f reshness. Every note sounds brilliant and alluring. The pathetic 
scenes have not lost any of their elfectiveness, and the lively parts 
still sparkle with good humor and wit. Not appreciated, even mis- 
understoocl at fìrst, "Carmen" brought painful disillusion to its 
composer. Its unique value was not recognized to the fullest and 
most enthusiastic extent till later. Today it is not only one of the 
most brilliant among the operatic jewels of France, but one of the 
most popular operas of the world's operatic repertoire. 

Bizet succumbed to a fatal illness three months after the pre- 
miere of his "Carmen." The assumption that he died in conse- 
quence of the "failure" of "Carmen" is incorrect. The unfortunate 
composer had been in ill-health f or a long time ; he was the victim 
of severe throat trouble, and his heart was subject to weak spells. 
He died when he was only thirty-six. 

To Halevy, who was, by the way, his real teacher, Bizet was 
passionately attached. He even finished Halevy's three-act Biblical 
opera, "Noah." On July 3, 1860, Bizet married Genevieve Halevy, 

4 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

the beautiful daughter of his teacher. To glimpse the true nobility 
of Bizet's soul, we quote an excerpt f rom his letter to Halevy, writ- 
ten during the Franco-Prussian war: 

"Our poor philosophy and dream of the eternal worlcì of the 
brotherhood of man, and the society of men! . . . Instead of all 
this — tears, blood, and numberless crimes ... I well remember 
that I am a Frenchinan, but I cannot forget that I am also — a 
Man. ..." 

In 1867 he expressed his views on criticism and the significance 
of music, thus: "We have all kinds of music: music of the past, 

present and future. For me there exists only two kinds of music 

good and bad. Do not we fmd genius in all lands and times? The 
true and the beautif ul never dies ! 

"The poet, painter and musician put all the wealth of their 
spirits, all that is in their souls, into the work they are doing. 
And what do we do? Instead of being delighted and ennoblecl, we 
inquire . . . about his passport; we gather information about his 
manners, connections and his artistic past. This is not criticism, 
this is police methods. The artist has no name, no nationality; 
he possesses inspiration, or he possesses it not; he is a genius, or 
he is not. From a great artist we cannot demand those qualities 
which he does not possess, but we must appreciate that he has !" 

It is worthy of note that the ballet music for the last act of 
"Carmen" was after his death borrowed from his "L'Arlesienne." 
In the original score there was no ballet music in the place where 
ìt is now customary to play it in the last act. 

Most of the attacks of his early critics were mainly directed 
against his "unlimited admiration and imitation of Wagner." Poor 
Bizet ! If he could have known that Nietzsche, the great philoso- 
pher who became Wagner's bitterest adversary after having been 
one of his most devoted friends and admirers, pointed later to 
"Carmen" as a model of clearness and dramatic naturalness, along- 
side of Wagner's "complicated and sophisticated scores"! Other 
critics accused Bizet of using Spanish popular melodies for his 
opera. It ìs true that he made use of a Cuban melody for his 
Habanera" and of a popular Spanish tune f or the "Seguidilla " 
which probably Sarasate, the great violin virtuoso and Bizet's 
classmate and friend, had called to his attention. 

Ayear or so previous to this writing, Nemirovitch-Dantschenko, 
a director of the Moscow Art Theatre Music Studio, presented 
Bizet s vital score in a somewhat revised version, under the name 
ol Carmencita and the Soldier." This gifted director has worked 
miracles m the new staging of this popular work. The music in 
tnis version by Dantschenko has not been tampered with; the only 
revisions made were in the libretto, such as the substitution of the 
loreador by the Matador Lucas and the entire elimination of the 



character Micaela, while instead of the fortune-telling by cards, a 
candle is used. The libretto written by Meilhac and Halevy on 
Merimèe's story was revised for the Moscow Art Music Studios by 
Constantin Lipskeroff. 

Bizet's memory is perpetuated by monuments, and he is now 
hailed as one of the greatest musical geniuses France has ever pro- 
duced. His "Carmen" was a "trionfo," but poor Bizet only tasted 
of the "lamento"! 


EilNEST Bloch is one of the master musicians of our time. No less 
an authority and critic than Romain Rolland said about his "Sym- 
phony in C sharp minor" that it is one of the most important works 
of the modern school. 

Born in Geneva on July 24, 1870, of 
Jewish parents, he studied from 1894 
to 1896 under Jacques Dalcroze. From 
1896 to 1899 he was a pupil of Ysaye and 
Rassl in Brussels, and from 1899 to 1900 
he studied under Ivan Knor in Frankfort. 
Returning to Geneva in 1904, he lectured 
in that city f rom 1911 to 1915 at the Con- 
servatoire. From 1916 he was teacher 
of composition at the Mannes School in 
New York. 

He conducted his orchestral works 
in Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, New 
York, St. Paul, Minneapolis, St. Louis, 

San Francisco, and Switzerland, and was everywhere recognized 
as one of the greatest composers of our day. One of the greatest 
prizes in the Ùnited States, the so-called "Coolidge Prize" (Berk- 
shire), was awarded him in 1919. 

His "Suite for Viola and Piano" was performed in Pittsfield, 
Massachusetts, by Luis Bailly and Harold Bauer. It was also played 
in Boston by the Flonzaley Quartet on March 11, 1920, and then 
performed in a viola and orchestra arrangement by the New York 
Symphony Orchestra on November 5, 1920. 

In regard to the views of the composer on Jews as creators in 
music, we take recourse to his own words, pronounced in 1917: 

"Nationalism is not essential in music, but I think that racial 
consciousness is. The two things are not the same, and I think that 
is where many composers get conf used about the real issue. A man 
does not have to label a composition 'American' or 'German' or 


Famous Mnsicians of a Wandering Race 

'ltalian,' but he has to be American, German or Italian, or even 
Jewish, at the bottom of his heart if he expects tò procìuce any real 
music. I, for instance, am a Jew, and I aspire to write Jewish 
music, not f or the sake of self-advertisement, but because I am sure 
that this is the only way in which I can produce music of vitality 
and significance — if I can do such a thing at all! 

"I believe those pages of my own in which I am at my best are 
those in which I am most unmistakably racial, but the racial quality 
is not only in folk-themes ; it is in myself ! If not folk-themes, you 
might ask, "then what would be the sign of Jewish music?" Well, 
I admit that scientifìc. analysis of what constitutes the racial ele- 
ment in music is difficult. But it would be unscientific to deny the 
existence of such elements. Racial feeling is certainly a quality of 
all great music, which must be an essential expression of the people 
as well as the individual. Does anyone think he is only himself ? 
Far from it. He is thousands of his ancestors. If he writes as he 
feels, no matter how exceptional his point of view, his expression 

will be basically that of his forefathers. I think the principal 

reason that Jewish composers have never as yet attained the fìrst 
rank in music composition is that, consciously or unconsciously ( 
through fear or lack of self-knowledge, they fail to proclaim them- ] 
selves in their art." And it is true. The Jew have never enjoyed 
a specifìc system of musical training, such as exists in nearly all 
countries of the world. The Jews of each country have been sub- 
jectecl to the influences of that country and all they have in common 
is the music of the Synagogue. A Jewish student's training in a 
conservatory of Berlin, Paris or in the music-schools of London or 
America, would be moulded much more by the influences of Ger- 
many, France or England than by those of his race. 

Ernest Bloch's opera "Macbeth" was the most discussed 
premiere of the season, at its reception in Paris in 1910. The 
critical camps were divided. Lalo, however, was very enthusiastic, 
and what gave Bloch most pleasure was the fact that Romain 
Rolland was so much interested in the score that he made a long 
journey to see Bloch in Geneva and encourage him to continue his 
career. Encouragement, at that time, the composer sadly needed. 
He had built much on the possible success of his opera, for a life 
full of hardship had almost persuaded him that it would be wiser 
to attempt making a living at other things than music, and com- 
pose for the joy of it, provicìecl.there were any time left over. It 
is a great composer who can keep from falling into the net of his 
own success and never rise again. 

Bloch is really a prolifìc composer. His chief works are as fol- 
lows: Symphonic poem, "Vivre-Aimer" (1900); Symphony in C 
sharp minor (1901-02) ; Lyric drama, "Macbeth" (1904) ; Or- 
chestral poem "Hiver-Printemps" (1904) ; "Poèmes d'Automne," 
for voice and orchestra (1906) ; "Concerto Grosso," for string or- 



chestra with piano obligato (1924-25) ; Symphony "Israel" (1913- 
16) ; Hebraic Rhapsody "Schelomo" (1916), produced foivthe first 
time in New York on May 3, 1917, by Hans Kindler, 'cellist; 
"Orientale" for full orchestra and the opera "Jezebel" (1917) ; two 
"Psalmes" for soprano and orchestra, and one "Psalme" for 

Of particular interest are some of his "Pictures of Chassidic 
Life" for piano, ancl the "Baal Schem" for violin. The latter was 
performed by B. Huberman in New York on March 21, 1924. 
Since then it has been included in the repertory of nearly all great 

Leigh Henry, the famous English critic, wrote of Bloch in the 
London Musical Standard on August 8, 1925, as follows : 

"Today, in music, however, one witnesses a recrudescence of He- 
brew impulse, in varying degrees Hebraic in expression. It is the 
typical Hebraic asceticism, the brooding philosophy and visionari- 
ness of the Book of Genesis, of the sterner prophets which, in spite 

of overlaying- German philosopliic influences, detei'mines the bent 

of his inspiration and expression. Similarly Hebraic is the sys- 
tematic, almost ritualistic, constructive attitude to new formulse, 
the immutable logic and the acrid humor of Milhaud. 

"If one accepts the classic defìnitions of opposed Hebraic and 
Hellenic thought, then Bloch is unquestionably the most Hebraic 
composer in the world. If similes loaned from one art to another 
are ever justifìable, then Bloch is par excellence the Isaiah of mod- 
ern music. His fìerce intensity, his harsh asceticism, his almost 
dogmatic exposition of stark modern form, his relentless, almost 
surgical cutting away of all emotional or sentimental emanations 
which might obscure the main hard imagery of a seer-like vision ; 
these mark the typical Semitic intellectualism which, in its extreme 
limits of religious fervor, philosophic thought, and systematic or- 
ganization, invariably carries with it something near the f anatical. 
Bloch's is essentially the tragic muse of Hebrew spiritual expres- 
sion, the war between an intensity of spirit and physique which 
has laid the foundations of the age-long conception of the attain- 
ment of beatitude through pain. Even the lyricism of Bloch is that 
of a beauty sensed through poignancy, not naive joy." 

His symphony "Israel" was criticized in the Neiv York Times, 
October 30, 1926, by Olin Downes, who said : 

"Very few composers are writing music that has vitality, sin- 
cerity and signifìcance. One of these very few is Ernest Bloch. 
Yesterday afternoon in Carnegie Hall the Philharmonic Society, 
repeating the program of the evening previous, played his 'Israel' 
Symphony — the fìrst performance of this work which has been 
given in Anierica since it was produced as a novelty by Artur 
Bodanzky in 1917. 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

"The symphony is great music. How it compares with other 
compositions of Bloch is another matter, not to be determined after 
a single hearing, and without preparatory study of the score. Its 
date of composition coincides roughly with those of the works of 
Bloch's early maturity, such as the 'Poèmes Juives/ ancl the mag- 
nificent settings of three of the Psalms for solo voice and orchestra. 
The Bloch of the Psalms, especially, is heard in the music played 
yesterday. The proportions and details of the symphony, of which 
but one movement exists, are not easy to grasp at once ; the work 
may be found to be episodic and a little less concise, a little less cer- 
tain in its development, than other of Bloch's compositions. But 
that is of secondary importance today. The fìrst thing is that the 
music is superbly conceivecì, that it quivers with life, that its per- 
vading grandeur and sweep are like cleansing wind when it is com- 
pared with most of the anemic or neurotic brain-stuff of tocìay. 

"The 'Israel' symphony was conceived in two parts — the first 
part lamentation, supplication, frenzy, prophecy, and vision of the 
promised land. The second was to be the triumph of Israel, but 
the composer has stated, for reasons of his own, that this part will 
never be written. Be it so! What is left is a magnifìcent body 
of music that rebukes by its energy, its protest, its vision, the gen- 
eral affectation and insincerity of this period in art. The orches- 
tration is at times heavy but always effective — never thick or 
superfluous. The theme stated at the opening, and subjected to 
masterly transformations, is lonely and grand. There are thoughts 
of Hebraic ritual, there are hearcl 'ancestral voices prophesying 
war.' Here and there is a detail not wholly Bloch — accidentally, 
as it were, reminiscent of another composer. It is only an indica- 
tion of a musical individuality slowly forming itself, gaining a 
mighty physiognomy of which the lines take some time to form 
and harcìen and clear. But this is a great and thrilling piece of 
music, and Mr. Mengelberg did admirably in bringing it again to 
the attention of the public and interpreting it with all possible care 
and devotion to his task. The symphony won enthusiastic ap- 

In 1917 he settled in New York as teacher at the David Mannes 
School of Music, and in 1920 he was called to Cleveland, Ohio, as 
the head of the newly organized Cleveland Institute of Music, in 
which capacity he continued to serve until the spring of 1925. 

Ernest Bloch, who is recognized not only as one of the greatest 
living composers, but also as a great educator and teacher, accepted 
in 1925 the invitation of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music 
to become its director. The securing of Mr. Bloch for San 
Francisco was most fortunate. His qualities, no less than his 
eminence, impressed those responsible for the project as particu- 
larly what was required. 




Max Brucii was a gifted and versatile composer whose major 
works possess the quality of nobility with strictness of mood ancl 
style. His was a mature creative gift, and in his striving for the 
strong, the earnest and the great, he 
gave utterance to a soul that was equally 
noble, earnest and poised. His work re- 
minds us of Mozartian and Mendelssohn- 
ian beauties. He never sacrifices artistic 
beauty for the sake of effect. As a com- 
poser of choral music, Bruch, together 
with Brahms, belong among the greatest 
musicians of their times. 

Bruch was born on January 6, 1838, 
in Kòln, and at an early age revealed 
creative musical talent. At eleven, he 
tried his power in major composition, 
and when only fourteen his fìrst sym- 
phony was performed in his home town. 
His teachers in theory and composition were Ferdinand Hiller and 
Carl Rheinecke ; and in piano, Ferdinancì Breining. 

In 1852 Bruch was awarded the Mozart prize in Frankfort for 
his string quartet. In 1865 he was appointed director of the Leip- 
zig Music Institute, and two years later was appointed conductor 
in Sonderhausen. In 1878 he was the leader of the Stern Choral 
Society in Berlin; in 1880, conductor of the Liverpool Philharmonic 
Society. He became conductor of the Breslau Orchestra in 1883, 
after a tour through the United States. In 1892 Bruch was ap- 
pointed professor at the Berlin Music High School. 

Following are a few of his best known works: His wonderful 
"Song of the Bell," "Odysey," "Arming," for mixed" chorus, solo 
and orchestra; "Frithjoff," "Salamis," and the "March of the Nor- 
mans," f or male chorus ; two operas, "Hermion" and "Lorelei," the 
latter the more successful. . . 

One of his most popular works is his "Kol-Nidrei," originally 
written as solo for 'cello and orchestra. In this melody the com- 
poser expressecì his Hebraic musical inheritance. This is no doubt 
why this song, built around a traditional synagogue lament, is the 
most lovecl and most widely perf ormed of his compositions. 
Bruch also composed three symphonies. 

If we judge him along the broad lines of his life and work, he 
can be considered the successor of Rheinecke and Mendelssohn. 
He died on October 2, 1920, in Berlin-Friedenau. 

10 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Brull's fatherland is Austria, where he was born on November 7, 
1847, in the city of Prosnitz, Moravia. His parents moved to 
Vienna two years after the boy was born. In that city he took 
lessons from Julius Epstein in piano, and 
from Fuffinacce, and later from Otto 
Dessoff, in composition. 

In 1861 Epstein produced the concerto 
of his youthful pupil, and this concerto 
was received with great enthusiasm. 
Soon Brtìll reached perfection in piano 
playing, and appeared as virtuoso in a 
long concert tour. His name became 
popular, thanks to his "Serenade for Or- 
chestra," which was fìrst performed in 
Stuttgart in 1864. 

The wholesome influence which 
Schumann and Mendelssohn exercised ^ 
over Briill can easily be noticed in his 

In 1864 his fìrst opera, "The Beggar of Samarcand," saw its 
premiere. His second opera, "The Golden Cross," met with uni- 
versal approval, and was played all over the world. (The libretto 
for this opera was written by the Jewish poet, I. G. Mosenthal.) 
Later he wrote the following operas: "Peace,"."Bianca," "Queen 
Mariette," "The Stone Heart," and the comic-opera, "The Hussar," 
which had a successful run in Berlin. 

His "Golden Cross" is rich in heartfelt and natural melodies. 
At ìts first presentation at the Royal Opera House in Berlin it like- 
wise found favor in the eyes of Wilhelm I, who said to theyoung 
composer : "You Viennese are a happy people ; melodies are born 
in you overnight, and no one can sing so happily as you do." 

Brull died in Venice on September 17, 1907. 


Abraham Wolp Binder was born on January 5, 1895, New York 
City. The son of a cantor, he early became acquainted with tra- 
ditional melodies and modes. At the age of seven, he was already 
writmg musical settings for the synagogue liturgy. He received 
his ì musical education at the Music School Settlement under Angela 
Diller and Ehzabeth Quaile. He later continued his piano studies 
with Albert Ross Parsons, and counterpoint and composition at 
Columbia University, under Daniel Gregory Mason and Cornelius 



Rybner. In 1918, he was awarded the Mosenthal Fellowship in 
Music at the University, and was later awarded the degree of 
Bachelor of Music by the New York College of Music, where Pro- 
fessor Rybner had gone to teach. 

Since 1919, Binder has been director of music of the 92nd Street 
Young Men's Hebrew Association, in New York City, where he 
directs a music school, a symphony orchestra, and a choral society. 
In 1923, Binder became instructor in synagogue and folk music 
at the Jewish Institute of Religion. In 1924 he became choir- 
master of the Free Synagogue, at Carnegie Hall, New York City. 

Binder went on a research tour to Palestine in 1925, bringing 
back a collection of melodies sung by the Palestinean cholutzim, 
as well as many Yeminite, Arabic, and liturgical melodies. This 
trip yielded not only a published collection of new Palestinean 
songs, but also a symphonic suite for a large orchestra, entitled 
"Holy Land Impressions." 


Aaron Copland, considered one of the most talented young Am- 
erican composers, was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1902. He 
began to study music in his thirteenth year. His teachers in Am- 
erica were Victor Wittgenstein and Clarence Adler (Piano), Rubin 
Goldmark (harmony and composition) . Then he went to Paris in 
1921 to study composition and piano with Nadia Boulanger and 
returned to New York in the Summer of 1924. 

The list of his compositions includes a Symphony for Organ 
and Orchestra (1924), performed in Boston by the Boston Sym- 
phony Orchestra, February 20, 1925 (Nadia Boulanger, organist) ; 
Ballet, in one act (1922-24) ; Four Motets for mixed chorus a cav- 
pella (1921) ; "As It Fell Upon a Day," song for voice, flute, and 
clarinet (1923), performed at a concert of the S. M. I., Paris, Feb- 
ruary 6, 1924 ; Rondina on the name of Gabriel Faurè, f or string 
quartet (1922) ; "The Cat and the Mouse" (1919) ; Passacaglia for 
pianoforte. The Passacaglia, played at a lecture recital of the 
League of Composers, in New York, November 16, 1924, was played 
in Boston by Denoe Leedy, November 10, 1925. Mr. Copland's 
latest compositions are Two Choruses for Women's Voices (1925) . 
His Suite, "Music for the Theatre," was performed on November 
28, 1925, in New York (League of Composers) . 

The Suite is scored for small orchestra; flute (interchangeable 
with piccolo), oboe (interchangeable with English horn), clarinet 
(interchangeable with clarinet piccolo), bassoon, two trumpets, 
trombone, two first and two second violins, two violas, two violon- 
cellos, double bass, pianoforte, xylophone, glockenspiel, wood 
block, snare drum, bass drum and cymbals. 

12 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Sir Frederick H. Cowen was born on the Island of Jamaica, on 
January 29, 1852. When he was four years old, his parents moved 
back to London, where his father obtained the position of head 
cashier of the Italian opera. 

His fìrst teacher was Henry Russel, 
also a Jew, the author of the very popu- 
lar English song "Cheer, Boys, Cheer." 
At the age of six, the little musician 
wrote a waltz, dedicating it to his teach- 
er. But it was from the teaching of 
Julius Benedict that the young composer 
profìted most. Cowen also studied theory 
and the violin with John Hass. 

At the age of eight Cowen wrote his 
fìrst songs, and at that time began ap- 
pearing on the public platformi — once 
even with Joachim. In 1865 his parents 
took the boy to Leipzig, where he at- 
tended the conservatory, studying under Moscheles, Rheinecke and 

In 1867 young Cowen went to Berlin, where he studied at the 
Stern Conservatory under Frederick Kiel. In that city he became 
an intimate of Mendelssohn's family, and it was there that he 
played at the court of the crown princess, the f uture Empress and 
wife of Frederick III. That same year his fìrst symphony was 
performed in London. 

Cowen became popular in England because of his melodious 
romanzas, of which he has written several hundred. Notwith- 
standing his wide creative activities, he fìnds time for practica'J 
things. He is as celebrated for his conducting as for his compos- 
ing. From 1888 to 1892 he was conductor of the Old Philharmonic, 
and some years later again accepted the same position. At the 
same time he conducted in Liverpool, Bradford, Glasgow and 

Cowen's compositions bear witness to his outstanding talent. 
He wrote several symphonies, of which the "Scandinavian" is a 
veritable treasure house of melody and deep emotion. It was per- 
formed in every civilized country. He also wrote an operetta 
"Garibakìi," and the following operas: "The Corsaire," "The Rose 
Maiden," "The Egyptian Maid," performed in 1876 in Birming- 
ham; the oratorios, "The Flood," "St. Ursula," "The Sleeping 
Beauty," "Ruth," "The Waterlily," "The Transformation," and an 
"Ode to the Passions." 



Later there appeared the overture "Niagara"; a suite for or- 
chestra; "Language of the Flowers"; various chamber composi- 
tions ancl some fifty smaller works. 

In 1.913 he published a book, My Art and Friends. 

Sir Frederick is an interesting personality. He has an English 
restraint of manner, yet much enthusiasm and a marked gift of 
fluency of speech, directly and simply expressed. Although one of 
the busiest conductors Iiving, he fìnds time for much creative effort. 
In 1903 he wrote his famous Coronation Ode, and performed it by 
royal command at Buckingham Palace. Musically, Cowen can be 
said to be self-made. A deep thinker, he states his ideas frankly. 
His face is that of a literary man rather than a musician. "I 
belong to no school, I admire them all for the good that is in them. 
If I were asked, perhaps, who comes fìrst with me, I should say 
Mozart." Thus Cowen expressed his views on school and music. 

Cowen conducted the Handel Festivals at Crystal Palace during 
1903, 1906 and 1909, and the Cardiff Festivals in 1902, 1904, 1907 
and 1910. 

In November, 1900, he received the honorary degree of Doctor 
of Music from the University of Cambridge, and in July, 1910, the 
same honor from the University of Edinburgh. 


To THE number of composers akin in spirit to Mendelssohn, we 
must add the name of Jadassohn, who gained f ame by his teaching 
of theory and composition as well as instrumentation at the Leipzig 
and Vienna conservatories. Though his manner of composi'ng 
bears marks of the influence of his predecessor, Mendelssohn, a 
large number of his works show novelty and originality of ideas 
and superb instrumentation. In writing canons, he achieved an 
excellence and mastery of f orm which f ew others have approached. 
His text books, Harmony, Counterpomt, Canons ancl Fugues, 
Free Form, histrumentation and a Commentary to Bach's 
Fiifjues, prove him a pedagogue of outstanding ability. 

Jadassohn was born on August 3, 1831, in Breslau. He studied 
fìrst in Leipzig and later in Weimar, under Liszt, returning to 
Leipzig, where he took up composition with Hauptmann. From 
1852 he lived in Leipzig, where in 1867-68 he conducted the Psalter 
Choral Society, and in 1868-69 the Wuterpe Choral Society. He 
received the title of Honorary Professor of the Leipzig University. 

This npble musician died in Leipzig on February 1, 1902. 

14 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Paul Dukas, one of the most brilliant and popular of modern 
French composers, does not belong to any clique. Always discon- 
tented with what he has written, he only consents to give it to the 
public when he realizes that he is incapa- 
ble of making it more perfect. This 
honesty has made Dukas one of the 
fìnest figures in contemporary musical 
circles. He has never sought ofìfìcial hon- 
ors or popularity, and lives a solitary life 
surrounded by a small circle of affection- 
ate friends, avoiding salons, coteries and 
concert halls. 

He was born in Paris on October 11, 
1865. During the fourteenth year of his 
life he began to take a serious interest in 
music. He began to compose, and had 
the courage to study solfeggio by him- 
self. After fìnishing his general educa- 
tion, he entered the Paris Conservatoire, where his chief teachers 
were Dubois and Guiraud. In 1888 he was awarded a Second Prix 
de Rome for his cantata "Velleda." In the following year he was 
unsuccessful at the annual competition, and abandoned his studies 
to tumll his mihtary service. At the same time he studied deeply 
and passionately the works of the master musicians of all epochs, 
and by his personal efforts succeeded in forming an esthetic doc- 
trine of his own, waiting to become perfectly sure of himself before 

While yet a student at the Conservatoire, Dukas composed two 
oyertures "Le Roi Lear" (1883) and "Goetz de Berlichingen" 
(1883) A third overture, "Polyeucte" (1891), based on the trag- 
edy by Corneille, was Dukas' fìrst work to receive public perform- 
ance. It was given by Lamoureux on January 23, 1892. Dukas 
orchestrated the fìrst three acts of this work, and also took part in 
the rehearsals and staging of the opera during the season of 1895. 

Recognition of Dukas as a composer of rank dates from the 
year 1897. His "Symphony in C-Major," composed during 1895- 
? 6 » was performed at an opera-concert on January 3, 1896, and 
m May the Scherzo, "L'Apprenti Sorcier," the work by which he is 
most known, was conducted by its composer at a concert of the 
Societe Nationale. 

By 1892 he wrote the text of an opera, "Horn et Rimenhild " 
and had even sketched the music. In 1899 he had begun another 



opera, "L'Arbre de Seienee." Both works were abandoned in f avor 
of Maeterlinck's "Ariane et Barbe-Bleue," the fìrst performance 
of which was given at the Opera Comique on May 10, 1907. 

Dukas won an enviable position as a critic through his erudi- 
tion, his keen perceptions and his analytical insight. He also con- 
tributes to many reviews, among them the "Revue Hebdomadaire" 
and the "Gazette des Beaux Arts." 

In 1909 he was appointed conductor of the orchestra class at 
the Paris Conservatoire, but three years later he resigned this post 
in favor of Vincent d'Indy. 

Paul Dukas has achieved independent solutions of the fusion of 
classical structure and freedom of expression. By reason of his 
classic sympathies, he is allied to the school of Frank, although he 
never followed its precepts blindly. In the works based upon classic 
forms, Dukas hasremained steadily faithful to tradition. In his 
dramatic works he never loses control of structural continuity, but 
he also succeeds in infusing into his music a due regard for color 
and clelineation of character. 

Vivid description of character and scene distinguishes his opera 
"Ariane et Barbe-Bleue." His faculty in disposing orchestral and 
choral forces with such ordered symmetry is masterly. This opera 
is not only the most commanding work by its composer, but it 
ranks with "Peleas et Melisande," "Le Pays," "L'Heure Espag- 
nole" and "Penelope," among the leading works for the stage by 
the modern French composers. 

Unlike Debussy, Dukas gives pre-eminence to the musical 
idea in his dramatic labors. His melodic ideas are of rare and 
plastic beauty, and he develops his ideas according to a method of 
variation peculiar to himself. A great artist among contemporary 
musicians, Dukas is also a creative genius without a peer among 
living composers. 


Julius Engel, famous Russian lexicographer and composer, was 
born in Berdiansk, Government of Tavr, Russia, in 1868. He was 
educated in the Gymnasium of his native city, and in 1890 was 
graduated from the law school of the University of Kharkov. At 
the age of seventeen, whiìe still a student here, he took up the piano. 
In 1892 he was graduated from the Kharkov Music Academy, spe- 
cializing in theory, which he studied under A. Urican, and in 1893, 
on the advice of Peter Chaikovsky, he entered the Moscow Conser- 
vatory, from which institution he was graduated in 1897. There 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

his teachers in theory and compositions were S E. Tanyeev and 
M. Ipolitoff-Ivanoff. 

Engel's career as music critic began when he was still a student 
at the Moscow Conservatory, and step by step he won note as a 
cultured and educated music critic. Upon being graduated from 
the Conservatory, Engel, on the recommendation of N. Kaschkin, 
was invited to take the post of music editor of the Moscoio Rus- 
skiya Vedomosti. Atthe same time he edited the Russian section 
of Riemann's Music Lexicon. He also undertook the translation 
into Russian of Riemann's books. 

Engel occupied a place of great importance in Russia's musical 
hfe. His general culture and great industry won for him hosts 
ol friends and admirers among Russia's music lovers. 

Following is a list of Engel's published compositions : "Ro- 
manzas," "Jewish Folk Songs" (collected and harmonized by him) 
"Hmdu Songs," "Children's Songs," "Hebrew Songs," and the 
incidental music to "The Dybbuk," played in Europe and the United 
States by the Moscow Habimah players. 

He also edited a Russian music lexicon in 1914, and has written 
numerous articles on opera, symphony, concerts, etc. ( 

Engel died on February 11, 1927, in Tel Aviv, Palestine. 5 


Frederick Jacobi, American composer, was born in San Fran- 
cisco, California, on May 4, 1891. He was educated in New York, 
where he attended the Ethical Culture School, of which he is now 
a patron. Another American composer, Rubin Goldmark, was his 
principal teacher in piano and composition, but he also studied 
under Rafael Joseffy, Paolo Gallico and Ernest Bloch. Some years 
later Jacobi attended the Hochschule fur Musik in Berlin, study- 
ing under Paul Juon. 

On his return to New York, Jacobi was engaged as assistant 
conductor at the Metropolitan Opera House to Alfred Hertz and 
Artur Bodanzky. 

Jacobi has written compositions for orchestra, string-quartets, 
violin, piano and chorus, as well as many songs. His larger or- 
chestral works include "The Pied Piper," a symphonic legend, per- 
formed by the San Francisco Symphony, conducted by Alfred 
Hertz, and by the Minneapolis Symphony, under Emil Oberhoffer; 
a symphonic prelude, "The Eve of St. Agnes," after Keats' poem, 
performed by the National Symphony, conducted by Artur 

His latest work, a string quartet mainly based on American 



Indian themes, receivecl its initial performance at a concert of the 
Chamber Music Society of San Francisco on October 28, 1925. 
According to one San Francisco daily, "Frederick Jacobi gave his 
fellow-citizens a thrill when his 'Assyrian Symphony' was given ìts 
premiere by the San Francisco Symphony, under Alfred Hertz on 
November 14, 1925." 

Jacobi is one of the founders of the American Music Guild and 
a member of the Bohemians and the MacDowell Club. In 1917 he 
married Irene Schwarz, a very talented pianist. 


DAVID, who is considered the father of modern violin playing, was 
an excellent player and pedagogue, as well as a composer of genms. 
He had the perfection of a real virtuoso on his instrument. His 
playing was always remarkable for its 
taste and his tone was noble and beauti- 
ful. Together with Ludwig Spohr and 
Molique, David occupies a place of honor 
as a violin virtuoso. 

While conducting the concerts of the 
Leipzig Gewandhaus, David succeeded in 
achieving brilliant results. 

As a pupil of Spohr and close friend 
of Mendelssohn, David had the road 
opened to him. His own pupils, includ- 
ing Wilhelmi, Zala, Heckmann and 
Schradick, occupied leading places in the 
great orchestras. 

His works for the violin: concertos, 
variations, etudes, caprices, etc, are excellent, and will long hold 
their own on the concert repertories. He also wrote several sym- 
phonies, quartets, works for the clarinet, viola and 'cello, and a 
comic opera, "Hans Wacht" (1852). 

David was born on June 19, 1810, in Hamburg. He was one ot 
the world's "Wunderkinder," as he began appearing in public when 
only ten years old. From 1823 to 1826 he studied under Ludwig 
Spohr. After that, David made a concert tour with his sister. In 
1836 he went to Leipzig, on the heels of his friend Mendelssohn, 
whom David helped in solving certain artistic and musical 
problems. He was particularly helpful to Mendelssohn when the 
latter founded the Leipzig Conservatory in 1843. Among the fìrst 
teachers on the staff of the now famous conservatory were David, 
Schumann, Hauptman, and many others of distinction. 
David died on July 19, 1873, in Klosters. 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Samuel Feinberg, eminent Russian composer, was born in 1890. 
He has astomshed every one with the suddenness of the revelation 
ot his great talent. His career as a composer started in 1915, when 
he produced his fìrst two sonatas, proving 
himself an accomplished and masterly 
composer. Strictly speaking, he never 
studied composition, but experimented 
with the expression of his own ideas. 
First he indulged in improvisation ; then, 
about 1911, he began more serious work 
in defìnite composition, working quite in- 
dependently and almost without help. In 
his fìrst attempts at composition he 
abandoned the piano, of which he already 
had a mastery, and his fìrst works 
worthy of attention were written f or viò- 
lin, voice, string quartet, and then for 
full orchestra. 

This struggle for expression was a painful one, and likely to 
W fi,/ if ag l C conse( l llence - In 1915 he fìnally chose the piano 
toi the ulhmate means of conveying his musical thoughts. Since 
makmg this c ecision, he has become an outstanding fìgure among 
modern Russian composers for the piano 

w « ? f^ ear fr /einberg we see much more the real Feinberg than 
IttPv ll? a ^ Cnabln "? Scriabin ' s earl y work, influenced as the 
^hin \ v r^ 7 C ^° Pm ' J he strai ^ eness of Feinberg's apprentice- 
ship was the real cause for his fìrst appearance, not as a beginner, 
but as an accomphshed and fully developed artist. The ideas of 

stnvnTr 8 ltl0ns are consistent with the present disturbing and 
stoimy times One thought, one tension, one purpose passing 
through a l of his work are the true cause of its unity, and add 
unusual mterest to the methods for its creation 

ihnrn7^u g ^ ™\ & com P osei ' onl y > h e Ì8 also a remarkable and 
tnoioughly origmal piamst, playmg his instrument with unusual 
refinement and skill. Like Chopin and Scriabin, he is a real poet 
ot the piano, and has created a new world of piano music. The 
pianist and composer are one and indivisible. One must consider 

eÌTn - amen y - 98 % P ° et Feinber ^ is witty and good-humored, 
even jokmg occasionally at the piano. The new Russian school 
has m him a passionate propagandist of its piano music. 

Ihe compositions that stand out most prominently are his seven 
Piano sonatas. The fìrst is luminous and bold, with a pastoral 



beginning and a bright fmish, reminding one of sunrise. The sec- 
ond is primarily lyrical. These two sonatas occupy the same place 
in his work that the fìrst two sonatas of Beethoven and Scriabin 
do in these composers. They are as remarkable, as fìnished, as 
deep and as youthful. 

We find nowhere in his work the purely musical "Ammut." 
His works possess a rich and original color, expressive harmonies, 
but no harmony and no color for the sake of harmony and color 
alone. Because of this his harmonizations are always clear in their 
relationship to the tonality, his melodies too expressive to be just 


Leo FALL, known as the Prince of Operettas, was born in Olmutz, 
Moravia, on February 2, 1873. He was the son of the conductor 
of the Army Music Band. Fall showed musical talent at an early 
age, but did not seriously commence stud- 
ies until he entered the Vienna Con- 
servatory, where he studied under 
Robert Fuchs and others. There he 
showed extraordinary talent in com- 
position. He also became a very capable 
conductor upon being graduated from the 
Conservatory, and for many years was 
first conductor at the theatres in Berlin, 
Hamburg, Cologne, and other cities. In 
1904 he returned to Vienna, and became 
one of the most successf ul operetta com- 
posers. That same year he married the 
daughter of Jadassohn. 

The melodies of Fall's operattas are 
fresh and tantalizing, and are marked by a rhythmic structure al- 
together peculiar to himself, and his Viennese temperament. His 
sound training and pleasing invention places him on a level with 
another famous Jewish operetta composer, Oscar Strauss. 

Fall is a prolific composer. The list of his operas and oper- 
ettas is too long to give in f ull. A partial list f ollows : 

The two operas, "Frau Denie" (1902) ; "Irrlicht" (1905) ; Many 
highly successful operettas: "The Merry Peasant" (1907) ; "The 
Dollar Princess" (1907) ; "The Girl in the Taxi" (1908) ; "The 
Doll Girl" (1910); "Der Liebe Augustin" (1911); "The Eternal 
Waltz" (1912) ; "The Night Express" (1913) ; "The Student Duch- 
ess" (1913) ; "Young England" (1914) ; "Der Kunstliche Mensch" 
(1915) ; and "The Golden Bird" (1920). 

20 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 


Rudolph Friml was born in Prague, on December 7, 1881. His 
parents were very poor. His father, who worked in a bakery, en- 
couraged the boy's musical ambitions. 

One night the owner of the bakery 
happened to come to old Friml's house, 
and heard the little boy playing. The 
child had not had a single lesson. But 
the baker, who was interested in music, 
thought Rudolph should be encouraged. 
He advanced the necessary money to send 
him to the Prague Conservatory. 

Friml had as schoolmate Anton 
Dvoràk, composer of the "New World 
Symphony," a struggling young boy like 
himself, and Jan Kubelik. These three 
worked together for six or seven years, 
studying, composing, playing, earning a 
little money now and then by semi-ama- 
teur appearances. Finally some local manager happened to hear 
them and started Friml and Kubelik on a concert tour, which was 
subsequently repeated for fìve successive seasons (1901-06). They 
trouped through the little towns of Central Europe, half the time 
without enough to eat. Finally they got to Berlin and made a 
success. London followed, and it was the London engagement 
that was responsible for Friml's coming to America. Daniel Froh- 
man, famous theatrical producer of New York, happened to attend 
their concert and sjgned them up for a tour of American cities. 

The rest has since become common knowledge in New York. 
In rapid succession Friml produced "Katinka" (1915), "You're in 
Love," "The Blue Kitten," "Tumble Inn" and others. His latest 
tnumph is the "Vagabond King" (1926), which played at the Ca- 
sino Theatre, in New York City, for several months. The music of 
the piece is exciting, with a quality which seems to belong some- 
how to the romantic and reckless period of the setting. The Vaga- 
bond's song, throbbing and drumming recurrently 'through the 
whole performance, has in it the defiant exuberance of desperate 
and outiawed foik of a time when outlawry retainecì some rags 
and tatters of the dignity which belonged to it when outlawry was 
a state of nature. It has that exuberance, no doubt, because the 
heart of it comes from some wild Roumanian gypsy folk tune. 

Friml also wrote pieces for the violin, 'cello, and a number of 
excellent songs. 

Composers 21 


Among contemporary Italian composers who attract the attention 
of the whole world by their melodiousness and originality, is Fran- 
chetti, who possesses, aside from a brilliant talent, many mil- 
lions in money, a very rare phenomenon, 
indeed, among musicians! 

Baron Alberto Franchetti was born on 
September 18, 1860 in Turin. He be- 
longs to a very prominent and wealthy 
family, being the son of Baron Raymondo 
Franchetti and his wif e, Baroness Louisa 
Rothschild. Alberto had to struggle 
against has father's wishes in order to 
follow his musical inclinations. 

He studied at fìrst under Nicolo Coconi 
and Fortunato Magi at Padua and Ven- 
ice, then under Draeseke at Dresden and 
Rhineberger at Munich. He wrote five 
operas — "Asrael" (in four acts), pro- 
duced in 1888 at Brescia and later at the famous La Scala and else- 
where with great success. His "Cristoforo Colombo" (m four 
acts) vvas produced at Genoa in 1892; his "Fiori d'Alpe" (m three 
acts) was produced in Milan at the La Scala in 1894; Signor di 
Pourceaugnac" (in three acts) was produced at the La Scala m 
1897, as well as his "Giamanio," produced in 1902. 

In his opera "Asrael" (of which the subject is taken from a 
Flemish legend of the f ourteenth century and an episode of Moore s 
"Loves of the Angels"), the composer was attracted undoubtedly 
by the deep religious mood of the subject. This opera is fillec 
with flying angels, singing apostles, trumpeting archangels and 
holy ascetics. The music bears witness to the great talent of the 
composer, the daring of his melodies, and refinement o f tas te A - 
though he imitates Wagner a great deal, he nevertheless shows 
much of his own individuality of ideas and mood. 

His opera "Colombo" is also worthy of attention. In it the com- 
poser rebelled against Meyerbeer's "L'Africame, which was 

hitherto acceptecl by nearly all contemporary composers as an ex- 

ample of grand opera composition. 

Some critics have called Franchetti the Meyerbeer of modern 
Italy, and there are certain points of resemblance between the two, 
besides the accidents of circumstance. Franchetti stands entirely 
apart from the hysterical school of young Italy. He also wrote a 
"Symphony in E minor for Orchestra," "La Figha de Juno, (La 

22 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Scala, Milan, 1915), "Glauco" (San Carlo, Naples, 1922), and his 
famoiis operetta "I Gove a Pompei" (Rome, 1920), which he wrote 
ìn collaboration with Giordano. 


Louis Gruenberg, composer and pianist, was born in Russia in 
1883. He was brought to America when he was two years old 
and received his general education in the public schools in New 
York. After some preliminary piano 
work with Adele Margulies in New York, 
he went abroad and studied at the master 
school in the Vienna Conservatory. Later 
he studied piano and composition with 
Busoni. He made his dèbut with the Ber- 
lin Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by 
Busoni in 1910, and subsequently ap- 
peared in recital tours through Russia, 
Germany, Norway, Sweden and other 
countries. He also was guest conductor 
in the Stadt-theatre in Kiel, Gòrlitz, 
Bergen, and other cities. He afterward 
returned to America with Busoni and 
p^ Q >' -p i ■ i ™ composed an opera, "The Bride of the 
Gods, for which Busom wrote the libretto. In 1921 he was 
awarded the Flagler prize of $1,000 for his symphonic work, "The 
HHI ot Dreams, which was played by the New York Symphony 
Among his compositions are sonatas for violin and piano, a 
number of songs, piano works, a symphony, piano concerto, cham- 
ber music works, etc. He is one of the founders of the American 
League of Composers and also a director of the International Com- 
posers Guild. His ultra-modern composition "Daniel Jazz" for 
tenor and seven mstruments, which was produced by the League 
of Composers m New York on February, 1925, was also chosen as 
one ot three American compositions which was performed at the 
International Festival in Venice in the Summer of 1925. 




Well-bred children, it is said, reflect honor upon their parents, 
and well-trained musicians reflect glory upon their master. The 
teacher of practically all the representatives of the modern French 
school, including Ravel, Florent Schmitt, Honnegger, Darius Mil- 
haud, and many, many others, Gedalge himself was not, apparent- 
ly, ihtencled by nature to be a creator ; he was a great teacher. 

Gedalge startecl upon a musical career comparatively late m 
life Born in Paris on December 27, 1856, he entered the Conser- 
vatoire in 1884, and at that famous incubator of great musicians 
studied composition and harmony with Guiraud. Gedalge was 
considered the greatest contrapuntal master of his generation. 

He has written two symphonies, an orchestral suite, a quartet 
and opera-comique. 

He died in April of 1927. 


Like many composers of the nineteenth century, Hiller was under 
the influence of his contemporary and friend, Mendelssohn. We 
can see in the works of these two composers a striking similarity. 

• Hiller was born on October 24, 1811, 
in Frankfort-am-Main, and studied first 
under A. Smith and later under Humml 
in Weimar. In 1829 we see Hiller in 
Paris, where he met Cherubini, Meyer- 
beer, Berlioz, Liszt, Heine and Chopin. 
The latter often said that Hiller's piano 
playing as well as his compositions for 
the piano were very similar to his own 
in spirit and technique. 

In 1843-44 Hiller conducted the Ge- 
wandhaus concerts in Leipzig, substitut- 
ing for his friend Mendelssohn. In 1847 
he was conductor in Dusseldorff and in 
1850-84 he was conductor in Koln. In 
1877 he was knighted by the King of Wurttemburg. 

Among his best works are his two big oratorios, "The Rape 
of Jerusalem" and "Saul," and several symphonies, of which 
"Spring Will Come" is the best known. Also some orchestral 
overtures, a concerto for piano, opus 69 in F sharp minor, and 
quintets for mixed voices. 

He died on May 11, 1885, in Kòln. 

24 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Frederick Gernsheim was born on July 17, 1839, in Worms. He 
studied theory under the composer Louis Libbet, and violin under 
Rosenheim and Hauff, in Frankfort-am-Main. 

At the age of eleven he appeared as 
pianist at a public concert in Frankfort- 
am-Main, where he played his own 
overture, which was well received. Soon 
after, his mother took him to the Leip- 
zig Conservatory. His teacher and ad- 
visers there were Mauiitz Hauptman, 
Julius Rietz, Richter and Moscheles. 

In 1855 we see him in Paris, where 
he remained for six years and gained 
renown as pianist and one of the best 
interpreters of Chopin. After that hè 
went to Saarbrucken, where he remained 
for three years as conductor, pianist, and 
composer, and afterwards accepted the 
post of professor at the Koln conservatory in piano, counterpoint, 
and fugue, also as conductor of choral societies. In 1874 he went 
to Rotterdam, where he organized symphonic concerts over a 
period of sixteen years, and where he also taught. In 1890 Gern- 
sheim was at the head of the Stern Chòral Society in Berlin, and 
also art advisor at the Stern Conservatory. 

In the fleld of both vocal and instrumental music Gernsheim 
lef t much of importance. The f ollowing are among his best efforts : 
Three symphonies for large orchestra; a violin concerto; a 'cello 
concerto; a string quartet; "Garden Song," for male chorus; 
"Agrippian," for alto, chorus and orchestra; "Divertimento," for 
flute and strings; a number of major ancì minor works for solo, 
chorus and orchestra; a hymn, for male chorus and orchestra; an 
album of songs, opus 57; second concerto for piano; the fourth 
symphony; second and thircl sonata for the violin; "Morn's Lul- 
laby," for chorus ancl orchestra; second string quartet in E minor; 
"Ode in C," for baritone. 

In Gernsheim's compositions we are impressed by the direct 
individual utterance of the composer. They nearly all possess 
vivid imagination, melodic wealth and strictness of rhythm. In 
his earlier compositions Gernsheim followed in the steps of Bee- 
thoven and Schumann, but in his latter works, we see more and 
more cleaiiy the composer's creative power. 
He died on September 11, 1916, in Berlin. 

Composers 25 


George Gershwin was born in Brooklyn (New York), on Sept- 
tember 26, 1898, and received his education in the public schools 
there. It was not until his thirteenth year that he started to play 
the piano, but after four months' lessons 
he played so well that friends of his 
father advised sending the young pianist 
to Europe to study. The advice was not 
.followed, however, and different teachers 
in turn were employed. Gershwin then 
studied harmony under Charles Ham- 
bitzer, with whom he also continued his 
piano study until the latter's death. 
Later he continued his harmonic studies 
under Edouard Kilyeni and Rubin Gold- 
mark. At the age of sixteen he began 
work as a "song plugger," for J. H. 
Remick, music publisher, sometimes 
playing all day for vaudeville acts and 
until two and three o'clock in the morning in cafès. 

On November 1, 1923, Gershwin made his fìrst appearance as 
a serious performer on the stage of Aeolian Hall, in New York, as 
accompanist for Eva Gauthier, in a group of his own songs, and on 
February 12, 1924, his "Rhapsody in Blue" was played for the fìrst 
time by its composer and Paul Whiteman's orchestra. 

In the Spring of 1925, Gershwin, whose original talent was im- 
mediately recognized by Walter Damrosch, director of the New 
York Symphony Orchestra, was commissioned by the Society to 
compose a concerto f or piano and orchestra ; and it is probably a 
circumstance without parallel in America that before a single note 
of the work was written he had signed contracts for six perform- 
ances of it with the New York Symphony Orchestra in New York, 
Brooklyn, Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia. 

This concerto is Gershwin's third essay in the field of serious 
music, the others being the already famous "Rhapsody in Blue," 
opus 2, and a one-act negro opera, opus 1, entitled "135th Street." 
The latter was written about four years ago and was performed by 
Paul Whiteman in January, 1926. Meanwhile, the composer pro- 
duced the scores of two musical plays, the operetta "Song of the 
Flame," and the musical comedy, "Tip-Toes." The concerto is the 
iìrst work Gershwin has scored for symphonic orchestra. In form, 
the concerto follows, in a rather elastic sense, the classical models. 
The fìrst movement, for instance, (we quote the composer) "is in 

26 Famous Musieians of a Wandering Race 

sonata-form, but the second, in a kind of extended three-part 
song-form; and the fìnale is, in principle at least, a Rondo." In 
other words, in utilizing the traditional moulds, Gershwin has sub- 
jected them to such alterations as modern music in general, and 
his own highly personal idiom in particular demand. 


Michael Fabionovitch Gniessin, eminent young Russian com- 
poser, was born in 1883. Af ter studying^ music at the St. Peters- 
burg Conservatory, he settled at Rostov-on-the-Don. Then he lived 
for some time at Berlin, and is at pres- 
ent living in Moscow. His earliest works, 
especially the "Orchestral Tone Poem 
from Shelley," which bears as epigraph 
five lines from "Prometheus Unbound," 
displayed his sense of style and the 
strong romantic turn of his imagination. V 
He composed a "Sonata-Ballade" for \ 
'cello and piano, which is one of his most 
characteristic works; "Hymne à la 
Peste" ; music to the "Phonikerinnen des 
Europides"; songs, symphonic poem, 
"Wrubel" for voice and orchestra, etc. 

Gniessin was a student of Bimsky- 
Korsakof? and Liadoff, at the St. Peters- 
burg Conservatory. 

In the works of Gniessin there is a novel pathos, and a pas- 
sjonate fervor, throughout individualistic, which fmds its expres- 
sion in complex chromatic harmonies. Gniessin began his career 
as a "modernist" composer, belonging to the school which arose on 
the debris of the distinguished "Mighty Group," and which lacked 
at the time any signs of a nationalistic physiognomy. Not a thor- 
ough modernist, however, Gniessin remained for a time at the 
cross-roads of two directions; then there came into his creative- 
ness a break, after which he wholeheartedly took the road leading 
to thoroughgoing Jewish nationalism. 

In the beginning of 1917, the year of the Russian revolution, 
we see a blossoming forth of the Jewish prophetic pathos in this 
composer. He enters definitely on this path in his songs, whose an- 
cestry we can trace to kabalism and talmudic wisdom. Even more 
iconoclastic does he become in his opera, "The Youth of Abraham," 
which is intended to serve, to all appearances, as an example to 
forthcoming Jewish "grand" opera. His second opera, "The Mac- 
cabeans," was written in the same spirit as the first. 


Composers 27 


CHRONOLOGICALLY, Goldfaden occupies the first place among Jew- 
ish national composers. An excellent connoisseur of Jewish folk- 
lore, he jealously protected it against the attempt of Sulzer and 
Lewandowski to "westernize" it. Weakly 
versed in the art of music, he neverthe- 
less possessed a real artistic instinct, and 
realized that his operas would be of value 
only if the national element in them were 
foremost. With his excellent musical 
memory he f ound it easy to fit the mem- 
orized music to texts written by himself. 
Goldfaden had a composer's talent. Un- 
acquainted with theory, his melodies are 
nevertheless beautiful both in structure 
and mood. They are somewhat monot- 
onous because of their exclusively dia- 
tonic character, and absence of modula- 
tions, but on the whole they are quite 
beautiful and have since become quasi-folk-lore. 

Abraham Goldf aden, poet and f ather of the Jewish theatre, was 
born in 1840, in Starokonstantinov, Russia. His father, a watch- 
maker and "Maskiel," educated his son in the spirit of the new 
times. In 1857 Goldfaden entered the Zhitomir Rabbinical Sem- 
inary. A year before graduation he published a collection of an- 
cient Hebrew poems, Zizim Uperachim, published in 1865. Two 
volumes followed in modern Yiddish, Dos Yidele (1868), and 
Die Yidene (1869, and won great popularity. Many of Gold- 
f aden's songs have become Jewish national property, and are being 
sung all over the "pale." During a period of ten years following 
his graduation, Goldfaden taught in the government schools in 
Simpheropol and in Odessa. In 1875 he founded in Lemberg a 
humorous Jewish weekly publication, Yisrolik, which was unfor- 
tunately short-lived. In 1876 he edited Czernovici's Die Bukowiner 
Israelìtisches Volksblatt, with the same unhappy results. The 
same year he went to Yassi, where he founded the first Jewish 
theatre. Goldfaden was not only the producer, decorator, and di- 
rector of his company ; he wrote dramas, with couplets and songs, 
and composed music to them. When the Jewish theatre was pro- 
hibited in Russia, Goldfaden moved with his company to Warsaw, 
renamed it "German," and went on playing in a peculiar jar- 
gon somewhat reminiscent of German, but of atrocious pomposity 
of speech, since known as "Deitschmerisch." After an extensive 

28 Famou s Musicians of a Wandering Race 

trip over Western Europe, Goldfaden came to New York in 1887, 
and there founded the Jewish organ, Yiclclische Illustrirte Zeit- 
ung. He then went to Paris and returned in 1903 to New York, 
where he played an important part in the cultural life of its Jews, 
being the founder of the fìrst Jewish theatre there. 

Goldfaden died in New York in 1908. Two years later the 
Vienna Academie Union ("Jiidische Kultur") announced the estab- 
lishment of a fund for the "Goldfaden Prize," for the best dra- 
matic works in Yiddish. 


Rubin Goldmark is triply f amous : fìrst, for his extraordinary 
musicianship, his pedagogic activities and creative work; second- 
ly, for being a nephew of the famous Karl Goldmark; and thirdly, 
for his wise and eloquent lectures and 
aphorisms, which he reads principally at 
the New York Bohemian Club. 

Rubin Goldmark was born in New 
York City on August 15, 1872. He re- \ 
ceived his education in the City College 
and later went to Vienna and attended 
the lectures given by the philosophical 
faculty at the University there. He be- 
gan his music studies at the Vienna Con- 
servatory, where his teachers were Livo- 
nius and Door in piano, and Fuchs in 
composition. On his return to New York, 
Goldmark continued his piano studies 
with Joseffy, and composition with 
Dvoràk. From 1891 to 1893 he was professor of piano and theory 
at the National Conservatory of Music in New York. From 1895 
to 1901 he lived in Colorado, where he was director 'of the Colorado 
Conservatory of Music. 

In 1902 Goldmark returned to New York, where he has since 
devoted his time to teaching, composing and giving lectures. He 
has given over 500 lectures and recitals in the United States and 
Canada. In 1910 he received the Paderewski prize for chamber 
music. His compositions include "Theme and Variations" for or- 
chestra, which was played under the conductorship of Anton Seidl ; 
the overture "Hiawatha," played by the Boston Symphony Orches- 
tra; the Symphonic Poem "Samson," performed by the Boston 
Symphony and later by the New York Philharmonic in 1917; a 
trio in D minor, performed by the Tollefsen Trio, a piano trio, 
piano quartet, violin sonata, songs and numerous other works for 
piano, violin, orchestra, etc. 



With Joseffy as co-worker, he was one of the founders of the 
famous New York "Bohemians" club, of which he was president 
f or the fìrst three years of its existence, after which he was elected 
permanent honorary vice-president. 

Goldmark is on the staff of teachers of the famous Julliard 
Foundation. His pupils in composition ancl theory include: Wil- 
lecke, Hugo Kortchak, Mischa Elman, Ethel Leginska, Frederick 
Jacobi, Aaron Copland, Victor Wittgenstein and George 

On the occasion of the fifteenth anniversary of the Foundation 
of the Bohemians' Club (Dec. 26, 1921), the membership organized 
a special banquet in his honor. 

He is now at the height of his career as teacher and composer. 
The partial deaf ness which has set in does not, fortunately, hinder 
him in his activities. 

Aside from the compositions enumerated above,^the tollowmg 
have since become popular in America and abroad : "Requiem" f or 
orchestra, inspired by Lincoln's famous Gettysburg Address, first 
performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra on January 30, 1919 
and since played under Stransky, Mengelberg, Stock, Rudolpn 
Ganz, and many others; a "Negro Rhapsody" for orchestra, first 
performed by the New York Philharmonic on December 19, 1922, 
and since played by the New York Symphony Orchestra under 
Walter Damrosch, the State Symphony, and other orchestras. 


The "Queen of Sheba" (1875) made Goldmark's name as a com- 
poser, but it was perf ormed af ter the composer worked and waited 
for years and suffered insults and humiliation— not the least of 
which was the appeal addressed to Ed- 
ward Hanslick, the noted music critic. 
The words with which Goldmark opened 
the letter to Hanslick reflected his state 
of mind : "I have had the great misf or- 
tune to compose an opera. The extent of 
this misfortune, however, can only _be 
appreciated when you realize that I in- 
tend to have it produced. You alone can 
help me to that end, more than all the 
others." But Mr. Hanslick did not lift 
a finger to help the poor composer, either 
as a music critic or in his capacity as 
artistic advisor to the Minister of Educa- 

tion. On the contrary, long before the 

opera was produced, when the Grand March from it was played 

30 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

at a concert and enthusiastically applauded by Liszt, who was 
present, Hanslick wrote that this part of the opera was the only 
part of the work fit to be heard. 

Mahler had long wished to give the opera the brilliant produc- 
tion which it deserved, but could not get the money from the Im- 
perial Treasurer. At last he succeeded in staging it in Vienna in 
1875. Since then it has been triumphant on the operatic stages 
in the world. 

Although Goldmark was under the influence of Wagner's the- 
ories, he nevertheless shows much originality and individuality. 
He is particularily successful in his emphasis on dramatic situa- 
tion, and his brilliant orchestration. Goldmark was much attracted 
by biblical material, and he brought to it all the passion of his 
Viennese temperament ancl all his love for the history of the Jew- 
ish nation. A romanticist, he shows a love for the fantasy and the 
poesy of the Orient. 

In his beautiful opera, "Cricket on the Hearth," he remained 
true to the emotional fairy-tale character of the libretto. A beau- 
tiful opera is also his, "Prisoners of War." 

Goldmark showed great genìus in his concert music, especially 
in his master symphony, "Bauern Hochzeit," and the second sym- 
phony in E flat major. In his overtures, "In Spring," "Penthesi- 
lea" and "Sappho" he reached great heights. These works are 
also immensely popular. Also of extraordinary interest are his 
violin concerto, piano concerto, piano quintet, quartet and quintet 
for strings, and Psalm 113 for chorus. 

His concert overture "Sakuntela" (1865) is a gem among 
works written f or the orchestra ; it is a poetical illiistration of the 
Hindu drama, "Calidasi." 

Goldmark was born on May 18, 1830, in Deszthel, Hungary. 
In 1844 he went to Vienna, where he studied the violin under Leo- 
pold Janse. From 1850 to 1857 he occupied the post of violinist in 
various Austrian orchestras. For Ignatz Brull, Goldmark had a 
great attachment as they were both frank and honest natures, and 
felt neither of the diseases that often consume musicians — envy and 

Goldmark died in Vienna on January 2, 1915. 

In his book, My Long Life in Music, Leopold Auer says the 
f ollowing of his acquaintance with Goldmark : 

"It was during one of my visits to Vienna that I met Goldmark 
one evening at a house of a music loving friend. He was most 
unassuming in his ways. He was a ìittìe chap with a large head 
crowned with long and abundant locks, then in vogue among young 
musicians, owing, I believe, to the example set by Liszt and Paga- 
nini. He was a remarkable musician and a great personality. His 
violin concerto can be considered a gem in the literature for that 

Composers 31 


An uncommon influence was exerted by Halevy not only on the 
French but on all musically cultured men of the world. As a master 
of French grand opera he has hardly a rival. The creator of "The 
Jewess," "The Queen of Cyrus" and other 
operas, he occupies a foremost place 
among French composers of the nine- 
teenth century, although he, like Barnett 
and Benedict, was of German origin. 

His father, Elli Halevy, was born in 
Furth, Bavaria, and won a name f or him- 
self as a talented poet, who wrote in He- 
brew. His two famous sons, one the 
composer, and the other Leon Halevy, the 
writer, took care their father's name 
should continue to live in the world of 

Halevy, as well as Meyerbeer, took 
little or no care that the contents of his 
work should reveal his ancestry- In his famous opera "The 
Jewess" he makes use of many ancient Hebrew melodies, and we 
owe to him the immortalization of the tragic f ate of his nation in 
music. In "The Jewess" we hear the passionate strains of relig- 
ious emotions, the century-old pains of the Jews, melodiously sung. 

The sympathetic character and the noble heart of the composer 
gained f or him general love and respect. The love and admiration 
of his colleagues, Ober and Thomas, and his pupils, Gounod, Mas- 
senet, and Jules Cohen, tell enough of this great musician and man. 

Halevy was born on May 23, 1799, in Paris, where he studied 
at the Conservatoire, under Cassot, Collibere, Berton, and Cheru- 
bini. In 1819 he received a government stipendium and the Prix 
de Rome for his cantata "Hermione." Halevy left for Rome to 
study, returning to Paris in 1822, where he devoted himself en- 
tirely to creative activity. 

Among his fìrst operas are "The Bohemians," "Pygmalion" and 
the comic opera "L'Artisan," also "Guid et Ginera," "Carl VI," 
and the "Queen's Musketeers." He also wrote many cantatas, 
choral works, romances and sonatas for four hands. 

The circumstances of his life were favorable to the full devel- 
opment of his gènj^is, a fact that is true of every few other com- 
posers. In 1827 he was appointed professor at the Paris Conser- 
vatoire, and two years later he received the position of conductor 
at the Paris Grand Opera. In 1840 Duke Holiansky appointed him 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

his private conductor, and four years later the Beaux Arts elected 
him vice-president. Halevy was also considered a great ora- 
tor, and was chief speaker at the Beaux Arts. 

He died on March 17, 1862, in Nice. His remains were removed 
to Paris, and his f uneral bore the character of a national mourning 
day. Among the distinguished people who followed the bier 
through the streets of Paris were Count Morney, brother of the 
Emperor, Prince Napoleon, and Princess Mathilda. He left an 
unfìnished opera, "Noe," which was completed by his son-in-law, 
Bizet. The opera, like "Samson and Delilah," had its premiere 
outside of France, having fìrst been performed under Felix Mottl, 
at the Grand Ducal Theatre of Karlsruhe in 1885, where, accord- 
ing to a report which appeared in the Paris "Figaro," it was a 
success. Among his most famous pupils are Gounod, Bizet, Mas- 
senet, Victor Masset, Del Devez and Duvernoy. 


What lover of operetta is unacquainted with the famous "Herbst- 
manòver" or "Czardasfurstin"? The author of these operettas is 
Emerich Kalman, the beloved Hungarian composer, who was born 
in Siofok, Hungary, on October 24, 1882. 
On a plane with Oscar Strauss, Franz 
Lehar, and Leo Fall, Kalman occupies 
one of the outstanding places among 
operetta writers of the day. Even more 
than that of his colleagues, Kalman's 
music reflects the color of his fatherland, 
that celebrated land of wine, dance, 
Chardasch ancl Paprika! 

Kalman studied composition at the 
Royal High School in Budapest under 
Hans Koessler. Aside f rom the operettas 
mentioned, he also wrote the following 
charming works that have already cir- 
cled the globe: 

"Der Kleine Kònig"; "Faschingsfee" ; "Hollandweibchen" ; 
"Die Bajadere"; and his latest work, "Countess Maritza." 
He is now living in Vienna. 




Writing about Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Maurice Halpersohn, the 
New York critic, said : "When Nature takes a holiday, which does 
not occur too often, she takes pleasure in creating a genius. And 
so it happens that a few chosen ones can 
enjoy as a gift of Nature what other mor- 
tals'can attain only by hardest studies, 
and then only if they have the necessary 
talent and ambition. We are accustomed 
to speak then of 'miracles.' One of these 
happy mortals on whose brain genius was 
stamped by kind Nature is young Erich 
Wolfgang Korngold, the Viennese com- 
poser, who has showed since earliest 
youth a musical genius which can be com- 
pared only with Mozart's." 

Erich Wolfgang Korngold was born 
in Brunn on May 29, 1897. He is the son 
of the noted music critic, Dr. Julius 
Korngold, who was also born at Brunn, in 1860, and studied in 
Vienna. He is the music reviewer of the Neue Freie Presse, where 
he succeeded the famous Dr. Eduard Hanslick (known as Richard 
Wagner's mortal enemy). At the age of six, Erich received his 
lìrst piano and harmony lssons under Emil Lamm, a distant 
relative of the pupil. When only seven, Erich began composmg 
small piano pieces and dances. It was characteristic of the boy to 
carry with him wherever he went a music note-book, on wnose 
pages he put down everything that came into his head. Later he 
took lessons f rom Zemlinsky and Gradener, to whom he owes his 
splendid and solid music foundation. 

Korngold's fìrst work of consequence, wntten at the age ot 
eleven, is the ingenious pantomime "Der Schneemann," performed 
at the Vienna Opera House in 1908. This work shows the child s 
genius, for its bold harmonies are conceived on vigorous melodic 
lines It was given its first perf ormance with Zemlmsky s mstru- 
mentation. To this period also belong his piano trio, opus 1, and 
a few piano piecea without opus numbers, includmg his Don 
Quixote." Korngold showed his mastery of orchestration at the 
age of thirteen, in the "Schauspiel Overture," opus 4, and his Sm- 
fonietta," masterpieces of their kind. His other works the second 
piano sonata, opus 2; "Marchenbikler" for piano opus 3; violm so- 
ita opub 6 string sextet, opus 10; string quartet; opus 16; and 
p ano quintet, opus 15, are written as though by the hand of a 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

thorough master. The following of his works also are often heard 
on concert programs : "Sursum Corda," a symphonic overture f or 
orchestra ; "Einf ache Leider," opus 9 ; ancl "Lieder des Abschieds," 
opus 14. 

His operas, "Der Ring des Polycrates," opus 7, and "Violanta," 
opus 8, had great success when presented at the Metropolitan Opera 
House in New York, yet these were eclipsed by his opera on a 
legendary theme, "Die Tote Stadt" (from Rodenbach's "Bruges la 
Morte"). The two fìrst-mentioned operas are not only musically 
brilliant, but dramatically so masterfully constructed that they 
prove Korngold's great genius in dramatic composition. We can 
even say that in them Korngold has become the f ather of a new 
form of music drama. Undoubtedly, Korngold's future successes 
will prove to have been foreshadowed in these operas, and it is to 
be hoped that he continues along his own tracks. 

"Violanta" was fìrst performed on April 10, 1916, in Vienna, 
under Reichwein, with Jeritza, Kurz, Piccaver, Miller and Weide- 
mann. With this opera Korngold achieved a brilliant success, 
gaining the interest of the greatest music authorities, including 
Arthur Nikisch, Humperdink, and Weingartner for this prodigy, 
Karl Goldmark said : "His knowledge and pristine wealth of musi- 
cal ideas are positively beyond understanding. Korngold is a won- 
der!" Professor Kretschmar said once to the elder Korngold: 
"Among all the early maturing geniuses, your son is to be consid- 
ered an extraordinary phenomenon. I only know of one comparison 
and that is young Handel." 

The "Dead City" had its premiere on January 10, 1921, in 
Vienna, with Jeritza in the leading role. She created the same part 
at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York in November, 1921. 
(This opera was incidentally the fìrst German opera to be produced 
in America since this country entered the war.) 

The text, by Paul Schott, one of the younger members of the 
well-known music publishing fìrm of B. Schott's Sohne in Mainz, 
Germany, is based on a famous romance by the great Belgian au- 
thor, Georges Rodenbach. It is Bruges, the "Dead City," which is 
the center of interest in Rodenbach's romance and drama and a 
good deal of the àtmosphere was retained in the libretto. Roden- 
bach's widow related to the Viennese playwright, Siegfried Tre- 
bitsch, an old friend of her late husband, the drama "Le Mirage," 
written after the romance "Bruges la Morte." Trebitsch trans- 
lated it into German and the drama produced at the Lessing 
Theatre in Berlin made a deep impression. When young Korngold 
asked Trebitsch for an effective opera libretto, he recommended 
Rodenbach's drama. Erich read it in one night and was so im- 
pressed by the fantastic story that he decided to set it to music. 
The same night he worked out an opera scenario, which, however, 



was radically changed when Paul Schott, his collaborator, had the 
happy iclea that the entire f antastic action should be changed f rom 
reality into a vision. 

Korngold's opera presents difficult problems to the singers and 
the stage management. The vision must impress us as such, and 
no realistic or even theatrical tone must interfere with the action 
of the dream. The score of it is alive with flaming harmonies. 
When Richard Strauss hearcl this opera he said : "The first f eeling 
one experiences is simple fear that such a precocious genius should 
f ollow the course of normal development to enable him to carry out 
his wishes. This assurance of style, this mastery of form, this 
individuality of expression, these harmonies, are really astound- 
ing! . . ." 

Enemies of Erich's father charged him with using his influence 
in f avor of an artifìcally created "child prodigy." They went so f ar 
as to charge that the boy had been given the name "Wolfgang" 
only after his musical talent developed, in orcler to establish the 
analogy with the immortal Mozart. Little Erich Wolfgang and his 
father were macle the objects of such bitter professional and per- 
sonal attacks that the f ather often contemplated giving up his posi- 
tion as critic, so that talent would not stand in the way of genius. 

Young Erich was in no way arrogant, but seemed to be, on the 
contrary, a lovable boy. Felix Weingartner, the great conductor, 
one of the most enthusiastic supporters of the boy's gifts, charac- 
terized him as "jolly, often exuberant, clever, but in no way pre- 
cocious; affectionate and grateful, but never submissive; of frank 
and sure judgment and with a goodly portion of humor." His 
whole crime was his genius, and the f act that he had an influential 
father and t'hat this father had innumerable acìversariesi What 
critic has not? 

The opinion of the musical observers who watched young 
Korngold's development with anxious admiration is best expressed 
in the following words of Felix Weingartner: "Erich Korngold 
is an individuality. In vain I sea.rched his compositions, even his 
earliest, for blunders. Nowhere did I find a point disclosing an 
inexperienced hand. His compositions never betray the composer's 
youth. No one would suspect that a little boy was the author. 
Erich's music is of a refinement which could almost frighten musi- 
cal experts, but we must not f orget that even a genius is a child of 
his time. He gives me an impression as though Nature had the 
caprice to sum up everything the art of music had produced in the 
last decades in order to give the sum total to a child in his cradle, 
who now plays with it." 

Weingartner found an opportunity to judge the boy's mastery 
in handling orchestral problems when he asked him to rearrange 
for orchestra three of Korngold's songs, which were originally 


Famous Musìcians of a Wandering Race 

written to piano accompaniment, so that the conductor's wife, the 
late Lucille Marcel-Weingartner, could sing them at a concert. 
When Erich brought him the orchestral part a few days later, 
Weingartner remarked that he wished the accompaniment some- 
what less massive. The boy sat down to work. Twenty minutes 
later he gave the conductor the corrected manuscript, which Wein- 
gartner, before whose very eyes this miracle had taken place, found 

Among Korngold's smaller pieces are songs, and the incidental 
music to "Much Ado About Nothing," opus 11, written in capric- 
ious chamber-music style, admirably illustrating Shakespeare's gay 
comedy. His latest work is an opera written for Mme Maria 
Jeritza called "The Miracle of Helian." The libretto is by Kalt- 
necker, who died some time ago of starvation. The author had 
heard Korngold's "Violanta" and was so impressed with the score 
that he immediately set to work to provide the composer with a 
suitable vehicle for his talent. 

He often conducts his operas and concerts himself, with great 
ability. In 1919 he accepted a position as conductor at the Opera 
House in Hamburg ; his skill, temperament and artistic taste were 
generally admired there. This position he resigned to devote him- 
self entirely to composition. 


One of the most gifted representatives of the young modern Rus- 
sian-Jewish School is Alexander Abramovitch Kreyn, who was born 
in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, on October 20, 1883. Kreyn became 
actively interested in composition after 
graduating from the Moscow Conserva- 
tory 'cello class, his instructor there be- 
ing Von-Glen. He later studied composi- 
tion privately under Professors B. L. 
Yavorski and L. B. Nikolayev. Shortly 
afterwards he gave to the world a suc- 
cession of musical compositions which 
rank among the best that modern Russia 
has produced. 

Kreyn was one of the most independ- 
ent among the modernists. His music is 
basically vocal. The vocal color of his 
work is not only expressed in the melodic 
line but 'runs throughout the har- 
monic structure. Marvelously enough, in all the complexity of his 



musical genius his music is always free from chance. Although 
Kreyn did not quite reach perfection in the pianistic writing, his 
pieces for that instrument are always rich and strikingly effective. 

In his early youth, he was for a certain time an avowed disciple 
of Scriabin, Ravel, and Debussy, and his work showed their influ- 
ence. Acquaintance with Hebrew folk-music and traditional melo- 
dies completely altered his artistic creed. He found here some- 
thing that made a basic emotional appeal to him and it profoundly 
affected his latter works. As has been the case with most of^the 
modern Hebrew composers who have given up the attempt to imi- 
tate the Nordic and the Latin, Kreyn's work developed individual- 
ity and power. In the latter works of all this school, and particu- 
larly in Kreyn, one feels the breadth of Biblical pathos, and a 
peculiar Hebrew lyricism which combines religious contemplation 
with characteristic racial melancholy. 

Kreyn attractecl the attention of the Russian musical world by 
his symphonic work "Salome," which he callecl a "Poem of Pas- 
sion," and which was performed at the Moscow Symphony Con- 
certs. It is a forceful and deeply emotional work with a strong 
Hebrew strain in it. In this poem Kreyn successfully illustrates 
the suffering of the heroine, rejected by the prophet. The music 
of "Salome" has a certain fascination because of the brilliant color- 
ing and the rhythmic contrasts in the different themes. 

His fìrst compositions were free from nationalistic traits. He 
became a conspicuous figure among Russian modernists before he 
revealed himself as a Jewish national composer. His fìrst attempt 
in the Jewish national spirit, written to order, was "Jewish 
Sketches," for string quartet and clarinet. After that he began 
other works in the same style. In "Salome," although there is not 
apparent a definite nationalistic approach, the composer feels his 
basis of a Europeanized tonality. His "Kadish," opus 33, is an 
excellent cantata for tenor solo, chorus and orchestra to the text 
of A; Orschanin. A piano sonata, in spite of its apparent European 
form, retains all the significance of a nationalistic production, as 
do his excellent series of songs to words of Jewish and Russian 
poets, Balmont, Byalik, Efros, and others. 

Kreyn has also written Five Jewish Songs to the words ot 
Abraham Ef ros, opus 31 ; music to the L. Perez drama "Na Pokay- 
annoy Tsepi," which was performed by the State Theatre in Russia, 
and a series of other compositions : 

Five Preludes, for piano, opus 3; Lyric Poem, for violin and 
piano, opus 4 ; Poem-Quartet, for two violins, alto and cello, opus 
9; Poem in F major for 'cello and orchestra, opus 10; Elegy, a trio 
f or violin, 'cello and piano, opus 16 ; Symphony No. 1, f or large or- 
chestra, opus 35 ; music to the drama "Sabatay Zvi," f or orchestra, 
opus 37; and many smaller works. 

Kreyn is not a religious thinker, but a religious enthusiast, 

38 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

a sort of "Chassid." However we may appraise his work, we must 
always consider him, aside from his specific Jewish significance, a 
fìgure of importance in the music of the world. 


Gustav Mahler is acknowledged as one of the world's greatest 
composers and conductors that ever lived. He was born on July 7, 
1860, in Kalisch, Bohemia. A few months after his birth, the 
family removed to Iglau. Here, at the 
age of six, he received his fìrst music 
lessons. In 1875 he came to the Vienna 
Conservatory, where he studied piano 
under T. Epstein, harmony under R. 
Fuchs, and composition under T. Krenn. 
Having won the conservatory prize in 
1878, he attended the philosophy arid 
musical history classes at the university 
f or two years. His works of that period 
(quintet for strings and piano, a violin 
sonata, and the opera "Ernst von Schwa- 
ben") were destroyed later on by the 
composer. At that time he came in close 
contact with Anton Bruckner, whose les- 
sons influenced his style, more perhaps, than any other com- 
poser. Bruckner was particularly delighted when Mahler made 
an excellent piano arrangement of his third symphony. 

In the Summer of 1880 Mahler accepted his fìrst engagement 
as conductor at Hall, and fìnished his fìrst work, "Das Klagende 
Lied," for solo, chorus and orchestra. The orchestra score was 
rewritten after 1900. The poem of this cantata was written by 
Mahler himself in 1878. This excellent work shows already a fully 
developed style and technique. It marks the beginning of his fìrst 
period, influenced by romantic poems, especially by the "Lieder 
Aus Den Knaben Wunderhorn." 

Angelo Neuman was the man who "discovered" Mahler, in 
Prague. As a ward of Anton Seidl, Gustav Mahler was the fìrst 
to conduct the Niebelungen Ring at the Prague German Theatre. 
At the same time he manifested such talent in the interpretation 
of Mozart that even then Brahms often said of him : "If you want 
to hear Mozart, go to Prague and hear MaTiler play him." 

During the Winter season of 1881, Mahler conducted at Lei- 
bach; in 1882-3 he conducted at the Olmutz Theatre, then was 



chorus master of the Italian season in Vienna. During the same 
year he composed his fìrst volume of songs. In the Summer he 
went to Bayreuth to hear "Parsifal" and spent the season of 1883-4 
àt the Cassel Opera. His "Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen" and 
his First Symphony he composed in December, 1883. In 1885 he 
was second conductor at the Deutsches Theatre in Prague, and in 
the Summer of 1886 he went to Leipzig, where he actively assisted 
Arthur Nikisch at the Leipzig Opera, and where he became known 
through his arrangement and completion of Weber's opera-frag- 
ment "The Three Pintos" (fìrst performed in Leipzig, 1888). He 
spent 1888-91 in the capital of Hungary as director of the Buda- 
pest Opera, and succeeded in increasing the importance of opera 
in that country. He was fìrst conductor at the Hamburg Opera 
House (1891) , retaining the post for six years. His f amous Second 
Symphony in C minor was fìnished in 1894 and had its world pre- 
miere in 1895. 

Mahler began his Second Symphony while at Leipzig ìn 
the late eighties and finished it, according to the com- 
poser's biographer, Paul Stefan, at Steinbach, on the Al- 
tersee in June, 1894. On March 4, 1895, Richard Strauss con- 
ducted the three instrumental movements at a Berlin Philharmonic 
concert. On December 13 of the same year, Mahler himself con- 
ducted the entire symphony in Berlin. The fìrst performance of 
the symphony in America was given by the Symphony Society of 
NewYork on December 8, 1908, under the composer's direction. 
I, myself, participated in the performance of this symphony a 
number of times, and also heard the Philharmonic play it in New 
York under Mengelberg on November 27, 1925. This massive work 
left an indelible impression on me; it is a master work among 
master works. 

Mahler has given us a clue to the signifìcance of this symphony, 
not only in the words that are allotted to the chorus and solo voices 
in the symphony, but by his exegetical comments. 

"When I conceive a great musical picture," he wrote, "I always 
arrive at the point where I must employ the 'word' as the bearer 
of my musical idea. . . . My experience with the last movement 
of my Second Symphony is such that I literally ransacked the litera- 
ture of the word up to the Bible to find the redeeming Vord.' 

"Deeply signifìcant of the nature of artistic creation is the man- 
ner in which I received the prompting to it. I had had f or a long 
time the thought of using the chorus in the last movement, and 
only the fear that this might be considered an imitation of Bee- 
thoven made me hesitate. About that time Bulow died, and I 
attended his funeral in Hamburg. The mood in which I sat and 
thought of the dead man was exactly in the spirit of the work that I 
was carrying about in my mind. Then the chorus intoned Klop- 


Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

stock's chorale 'Resurrection.' This struck me like a flash of light- 
ning, and everything was revealed clearly and plainly 'to my soul. 
The creative artist was waiting for this flash. What I then experi- 
enced I had to create in tones. And yet, if I had not had this work- 
already in me, how could I have had this experience?" 

The symphony has been called, with good reason, apparently, 
the "Resurrection" Symphony, but this title was displeasing to 
Ernst Otto Nodnagel, who wrote at length about Mahler's works 
in his Jenseits von Wagner and Liszt (1902). Herr Nodnagel 
preferred to see in the fìrst Allegro "the funeral music of a great 
man," with hints at episodes in his life; in the idyllic second move- 
ment he perceived "a ref erence to an episode of sunny happiness" ; 
in the "demoniacal Scherzo," "a portrayal of the doubt and despair 
of a racked soul"; and in the fourth, "comfort"; while the fìfth 
brings "the longed-for deliverance, not as a 'resurrection,' a con- 
fession or religious belief , but in the sense of our modern biological 
views." Or, as it has been phrased by another writer, a "Hymn 
of praise on the return of the soul clarified and perfected." Herr 
Nodnagel explains the bird's thrillings in the last movement, which 
have puzzled many commentators, as being a "symbol of the last 
expiring vestige of life on the earth." 

"This is a symphony of destiny. Mahler's subsequent explana- 
tion implies (in the fìrst movement) the death of a hero who has 
fallen in the Promethean struggle for his ideal, for the knowledge 
of life and death. Abysmal depths are stirred. A long-drawn-out 
f uneral march rises sharp and trenchant from the restless declama- 
tory basses, with a consuming lament in the wood-winds. Then the 
abrupt change from minor to major so characteristic of Mahler, 
in horns and strings, very softly, a fìrst promise of consolation. 
But, quick as lightning, the convulsion of the beginning returns." 

The second movement is an andante-intermezzo in A-flat in 
retrospective mood. The strings begin a dance tune, a horn leads 
to the key of B, changing E flat enharmonically to D sharp. Lively, 
gay, youthf ul triplets over an unmoving bass. 

The third movement, a scherzo in form, is St. Anthony of 
Padua's sermon to the fìshes (from "Des Knaben Wunderhorn") . 
The fourth movement, "Primal Light," is also from this famous 
old German folk poetry. The fìfth movement, "The Great Sum- 
mons," a wild, frantic, terrifying scherzo, represents Death and 
Judgment at hand. "Death and Judgment are at hand. But the 
storm of the orchestra is interrupted by reassurances. Distant 
horns spread the terror of the Last Day. Like a subdued March, 
the chorale of the fìrst movement is recalled — a reference to the 
coming endless procession. . . . The cry for mercy and grace 
sounds terribly in our ears. Fear and hope struggle in all hearts. 
The Great Summons is heard; the trumpets of the Apocalypse 



sound the call. In the awful silence we seem to hear a far, far 
distant nightingale, like the last quivering echo of earthly life. 
The chorus of the saints and the heavenly hosts begins almost in- 
auclibly : "Thou shalt arise, arise f rom the dead !" The splendor 
of God appears. . . . It is no judgment; there are no sinners, no 
righteous. . . . There is no punishment and no reward. An irre- 
sistible sentiment of love penetrates us with blest knowledge and 
vital glow. The chorus with soprano solo, begins a capella, with 
indescribable effect (the fìrst two themes are taken from a hymn, 
"The Resurrection," by Friedrich Gottlob Klopstock). With the 
peal of organ and bells amid the jubilation of the orchestra, this 
"Resurrection Symphony" ends. 

In 1896 Mahler finished his Third Symphony. Its fìrst complete 
performance took place in 1902. From 1897 he was director of the 
Vienna Opera, and here began his great transformation of the rep- 
ertoire — with new mises en scene of the operas of Mozart, Gluck, 
Wagner and other classics. This period was the heyday of that 
opera house. The fìrst performance of his Fourth Symphony, a 
tremendous and overpowering work, composed in 1899-90, was 
given in Munich in 1902. Whereas the second, third and fourth 
symphonies have solo or choruses in the last movement, the sym- 
phonies of the second period (except the eighth symphony) are 
entirely instrumental. His Fifth Symphony, Mahler fìnished in 
1902 (performed for the fìrst time at Cologne in 1904). In 1904 
he married Alma Maria Schindler. That same year he also began 
his Sixth Symphony (fìrst in Essen), and his Seventh, which he 
completed in 1906 (fìrst performed in Prague, 1908). This is his 
maturest effort, and is one of the most significant works ìn the 
modern symphonic repertory. It is written in two parts (with 
solis and double chorus). The first part is, "Hymn, Veni, Creator 
Spiritus" (with double fugue) ; the second part— the last scenes of 
Part II of "Faust" in the form of an Adagio, Scherzo and Finale. 
It had its fìrst performance in Munich, September 12, 1908. This 
tremendous work demands a colossal ensemble and is named the 
"Symphony of the Thousand." 

After a period of ten years' work, Mahler left his post as direc- 
tor of the Vienna Opera, and in 1907 came to New York, where he 
conducted the operas of Mozart and Wagner and many symphonic 
concerts. It was during the Summer of 1908 that he fìnished his 
orchestral poem, "Das Lied von der Erde," which had its fìrst per- 
formance in Munich in 1911 under Bruno Walter. This work, 
after a Chinese poem, is written for alto and tenor voices with 
orchestra. It was during his stay in America that he composed 
his Ninth Symphony, which had its premiere in Vienna in 1912, 
also under Bruno Walter, 

42 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In this symphony, the fìrst and fourth movements are Adagio, 
and are in religious mood, the second movement in rustic mode, 
while the third is burlesque. During one of the rehearsals with the 
New York Symphony, the author was told by Otto Klemperer that. 
the third movement was written during Mahler's stay in New York, 
and reflects the futility of the haste, noise and bustle of the great 
American metropolis. It is as though Mahler asked the world f or 
a solution of the eternal enigma: "Whither do men go? Is it 
worth all the trouble?" In the fourth movement Mahler answers 
this question : "Yes, in death will you fìnd it, in rest eternal and 
in oblivion. . . ." 

In 1909-10 Mahler began sketches for his Tenth Symphony, but, 
alas ! he did not fìnish it — a f ate he shared in common with Bee- 
thoven and Bruckner, whose lives ended after their Ninth Sym- 
phonies were written. 

This great genius died on May 18, 1911, in Vienna, without 
having heard his Ninth Symphony. It was not performed in public 
till nearly a year after his death. His last concert in America took 
place on February 21, 1911, after which he returned to Vienna. 

While Hermann Levi saw in Wagner's labors the full realisa- 
tion of the ideal Music-Drama, Gustav Mahler was considered a 
conductor par excellence of these dramas. He met all great musical 
compositions of this day with the greatest honesty and attention. 

Mahler's fame increased rapidly after his death. He is the last 
in the line of Viennese classical composers. He completed the 
romantic symphonic form handed on to him by Schubert and 

Together with Hans von Bulow, Mahler should be considered 
one of the greatest and mqst powerful personalities among con- 
ductors. A friend of the author's, who played under Mahler's 
leadership, once said that no conductor has ever exercised such 
magnetic influence over his orchestras. He was also one of the 
most loved of men, by his friends as well as by the members of 
his orchestras, and by all people with whom he came in contact. 
Bright and genial, he was kind to all, always responding to any 
request for his aid or service. 

His unfìnished Tenth Symphony was fìrst performed on June 6, 
1925, in Prague, under Zemlinsky. 

Another great living Jewish composer, Ernest Bloch, remarked 
regarding the influence of racial inheritance on a composer's work : 
"I think the principal reason that Jewish composers have never as 
yet attainecì the fìrst rank in musical composition is that consciously 
or unconsciously, through fear or lack of self-knowleclge, they 
failed to proclaim themselves in their art. I think the great short- 
coming of Mahler as a composer was that he failed to realize this. 
So he built with idioms that were outworn and inadequate to the 
things he wishecl to say ancl the manner in which he woulcl have 



said them. If , in his restless searching for the 'word' he could have 
linked himself to the genius of his race, what might he not have 
accomplished? As it is, we listen to Mahler's great symphonies, 
that tower so high, and aspire so much higher, and realize with 
sorrow that f or all their spirituality their musical spirit is too con- 
ventional, too certain to crumble with the passage of time." 


ONE of the most talentecl composers of our time is Moritz Mosz- 
kowsky, son of a Polish Jew. His musical gift expressed itself in 
creation, although he also ranked high as a pianist and a violinist. 

He is considered to have been one of the 
greatest Polish composers for the piano, 
his Spanish dances and G e r m a n 
choruses being especially delightful. Few 
pianistic programs fail to include his 
name. The Polish spirit of his work has 
some kinship with the genius of Chopin, 
though the influence of Wagner and Liszt 
is f requently patent. 

Born on August 23, 1854, in Breslau, 
Moszkowsky showed his talent and incli- 
nation for music at an early age. When 
he was eleven years old, his parents un- 
dertook to give him a serious musical ed- 
ucation. His fìrst quartet for piano and 
strings was composed two years later. The next year his parents 
moved to Berlin, and there he entered the Stern Conservatory 
where he studied piano under Eduard Frank, and composition un- 
der Frederich Kiel. After two years he entered the Conservatory 
of Kullak, and there studied composition with Wuhertz and piano 
with Kullak. 

He was eighteen when he gave his fìrst concert overture for 
orchestra. A year later he appeared as pianist in a program of his 
own works, and was enthusiastically received. In 1876, he wrote 
the symphonic poem, "Jean d'Arc," which made his name famous 
at home and abroad. 

Among his most important works are the f ollowing : 

Two orchestrated suites; a violin concerto; the opera "Boabdil"; 
incidental music to "Don Juan" and "Faust" ; numerous pieces f or 
piano (two and four hands) ; pieces for 'cello, songs, compositions 
for two pianos, etc. 

Moszkowsky received many honors and prizes, mcludmg an 

44 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

honorary membership of the London Philharmonic Society, and 
membership in the Queen's Academy of Arts. 

During his latter years he lived in Paris where he was a leader 
in musical circles, being considered one of the most talented artists 
and pedagogues. 

In December, 1919, it was reported that Moszkowsky, who had 
been in uncomfortable circumstances, was ill and in want. He had 
lost practically all his fortune in the war, and had been compelled 
to undergo several difficult and expensive operations on his throat, 
which kept him in hospitals for long periods of time. His illness 
had left him in such a weakened condition that he was unable to 
do any more composing or teaching. His editions of standard 
works which he had made during the war, remained unpublished 
due to the shortage of materials. An appeal for funds was made, 
and in a few days over $1,000 was subscribed. In December, 
1921, a remarkable concert was given in Carnegie Hall, New York, 
for the benefìt of Moszkowsky. Pifteen prominent pianists gave 
their services, including Josef Lhevinne, Ignaz Friedman, Wilhelm 
Bachaus, Leo Ornstein, Ossip Gabrilowitsch, Percy Grainger, Ern- 
est Schelling, Ernest Hutchison, Germaine Schnitzer, Elly Ney, 
Harold Bauer, Alfredo Casella, Sigismund Stojowsky, Alexander 
Lambert and Walter Damrosch. A reproducing piano as well as 
programs autographed by all the players were auctioned off at 
high prices. 

At this concert $15,000 was realized, which together with the 
Presser Fund, and a fund collected by Musical America, brought 
the total amount to $20,000, which was sent immediately to 

The life of Moritz Moszkowsky was, for the most part, quiet 
and uneventful. His student days were free from the poverty that 
has been the lot of so many musicians, and his success as a pro- 
fessional pianist was immediate. In the fìeld of composition he 
seems to have been absolved from the necessity of gradual devel- 
opment, so that his early works are as ripe and finished as his latest. 

Though of Polish descent, he cannot be reckoned as a Polish 
composer. His works are German or French in style and in the 
spirit of Mendelssohn and Schumann, though marked by the ele- 
gance of style that characterizes the land of his adoption. Curi- 
ously enough, two well-known writers on musical subjects referred 
to Moszkowsky respectively as "a salon composer of the Romantic 
School" and as "classicist among salon composers." His piano 
pieces for four hands are unrivalled in excellence. 

Personally he was a gentle, cheerf ul man, with a keen sense of 
humor, who was excellent company. Once, writing to a friend, he 
said: "In addition to my extensive musical acquirements, I can 
play billiards, chess, dominoes and violin, and can ride, imitate 
canary birds and relate jokes in the Saxon dialect," He further- 



more addecì that he was "a very tidy, amiable man," which mot 
summed up as well as any description could, not only the man but 
his musical compositions as well. 

Moritz Moszkowsky died in Paris on March 2, 1925, surrounded 
by friends and admirers. 


The Mendelssohn family traces its origin from a poor Jewish 
schoolmaster of Dresden named Mendel. On the sixth of September, 
1729, the wife of this man gave birth to a son who was called Moses. 

, In later life he was known in Dresden as 

Moses, the Son of Mendel (Moses Men- 
delssohn). This Moses later became one 
of Germany's gj.èatest philosophers, and 
it was he who was immortalizecl in Les- 
sing's famous clrama— "Nathan the 

In 1763 Moses married a girl of his 
own faith named Fromme Guggenheim, 
daughter of a humble merchant. They 
had three sons, Joseph, Abraham and 
Nathan, and three daughters, Dorothy, 
Henrietta and Recha. The second son, 
Abraham, and his wife, Leah Solomon, 
a lady of considerable property and ac- 
complishments, whom he married on December 26, 1804, were the 
parents of Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. 

Leah's older brother hacl long been a Christian. In accordance 
with German custom he had to assume on his admission into the 
Lutheran community the surname of Bartholdy in addition to his 
own. By his aclvice, Abraham decided to have his children bap- 
tized in accordance with the Lutheran formula, and educated as 
Protestant Christians. He seems to have adopted this course in 
the full conviction that he was doing the right thing for his chil- 
dren, though he had not at flrst the courage to take the same step 
himself. However, after a period of irresolution, he also presented 
himself and his wife for baptism at Frankfort. She took the Chris- 
tian names of Felicia Paulina, and the whole f amily assumed the 
double name, Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. 

Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy was born in Hamburg on Feb- 
ruary 3, 1809. When the boy was f our years old his parents moved 
to Berlin. His teachers in piano and composition were Louis Ber- 
ger and Celter (a friend of Goethe) ; his violin teacher was Hen- 
ning. The f amous philologist, Paul Heyse, was the f amily's tutor. 

46 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

The culture, taste and hospitality of the Mendelssohns made their 
home an artistic centre of Berlin. 

At the age of nine Felix gave his first public concert, and at 
ten entered the Berlin Sing-Akademie. Two years later Zelter 
introduced the boy to Goethe, who showed much interest in the 
boy's genius. By that time no one any longer doubted Felix's tal- 
ents, excepting perhaps his careful father. The latter did not 
allow his son to devote himself to his passionately loved music, 
when the great Paris musical powers, with Cherubini at the head, 
unconditionally recognized his talent. Even then it was only on 
condition that the boy continue his general education. He was 
graduated from High School and for two years attended the lec- 
tures at the Berlin University. 

At the age of sixteen, he wrote his f amous Octet, and at the age 
of seventeen his overture to Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's 
Dream." This latter composition occupies to this day a unique 
place in the world's music literature. It indicates a genius already 
mature. In this work the orchestra achieves great expressiveness 
and exceptional brightness of color. 

The characteristic spirit of Mendelssohn's work, its fairy-ta'le 
character, its limpid beauty, was the greatest triumph of the Ro- 
mantic School. Early in 1829 Mendelssohn did music a great 
service by performing in Berlin Bach's "Saint Matthew's Passion," 
a work that had remained in oblivion for seventy years. Soon 
afterwards he went to London, where he was introduced by Mosch- 
eles to the Philharmonic Society and started preparations for the 
presentation of his "Midsummer Night's Dream." The premiere 
took place on May 18, 1829. Its success was colossal. Its second 
presentation on July 13 of the same year was a triumph for the 

Marchesi, the famous singer, in her memoirs says: "London 
worshipped Mendelssohn and his 'songs without words/ his 'Wal- 
purgis Night' music, his 'Elijah' and 'St. Paul/ and his 'Midsum- 
mer Night's Dream.' When Judah spoke through the lips of Men- 
delssohn, he spoke with a heavenly voice, that still enchants the 
woiid by its sweetness and expressiveness." 

One year later in 1830, Mendelssohn went to Italy via Munich. 
After a visit to Naples he returned home, where he played at court 
his Piano Concerto in B minor, and where he was commissioned to 
write an opera for the city of Munich. 

After his brilliant presentation at Dusseldorff of Handel's 
"Israel in Egypt," Mendelssohn was offered the post of conductor 
at that theater, which he accepted and held for three years. In 
the Spring of 1835 he conducted the Musical Festival at Kòln, and 
then left for Leipzig, where he was invited to conduct the Gewand- 
haus concerts. Thanks to his genius and his charming personality, 



Mendelssohn soon became the center of Leipzig's musical life. In 
1843 he founded, under the protection of the King of Saxony, the 
Leipzig conservatory, which was des- 
tined to become famous in the annals of 

On March 28, 1837, he married Ce- 
cilia Jorneau, the daughter of a Ham- 
burg minister, a charming and kindly 
woman. In this marriage Mendelssohn 
found his life's happiness. 

An invitation from the Prussian 
King, Friederich the Fourth, to come to 
Berlin was not accepted, and even his 
appointment to the post of General Music 
Director did not entice him, for he did 
not like this city, where he felt his music 
had not been properly received. At a 
f arewell audience, the king remarked that he could not f orce Men- 
delssohn to remain in Berlin, but that he was much hurt by his 
refusal to stay. Not only Prussia, but Switzerland, England and 
other countries invited the composer to come and lead music fes- 

Mendelssohn was an innovator in the most diverse branches 
of his art. As a composer, virtuoso and man, he won for himself 
the love and admiration of the whole world. Unfortunately, he, 
like Weber, Schubert, Mozart and Bizet, died in the heyday of his 
creative life. This genius, who occupies so unique a place in the 
world's esteem, owes his greatness not only to the heavens' grace, 
but to having sprung f rom a family distinguished for its spiritual 

This immortal composer has again proved by his nurnerous 
works how greatly the Jewish race is gif ted with mil^ical genms. 

His works to this day rank high in almost alr the diverse 
branches of music. He wrote many concert overtures, sympho- 
nies, concertos for piano and violin, and chamber music; duets, 
trios, quartets, octets ; salon pieces f or piano, among which are his 
f amous "Songs Without Words" ; works for the organ and f or male 
voices, and the unfinished opera "Lorelei" ; the oratorios "St. Paul" 
and "Elijah"; motets, cantatas, hymns, etc. 

Mendelssohn was the creator of the Concert Overture in its 
present-day, independent and fìnished orchestral form, of which 
his "Hebrides," "Melusina" and similar works are examples. 

The death of his dearly beloved sister, Fanny, who was a kin- 
dred spirit, on May 18, 1847, was an insupportable calamity in the 
life of the young musician. Whoever has heard his Quartet in F 
minor, written during the Summer of 1847, will understand how 

48 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

deeply he suffered f rom that time till his death. He began to avoid 
society more and more, and became more and more enervated and 
irritable. His lively walk turned into a slovenly gait. On Octo- 
ber 28, 1847, Mendelssohn suffered a stroke, and on November 4 
of the same year, he died. Three days later he was buried. His 
teachers, Moscheles, David, Hauptman and Gade, were the pall- 

The compositions Mendelssohn left are too numerous to fìnd a 
detailed listing in so limited a volume as this. To form a concep- 
tion of how great Mendelssohn's genius really was, it is enough to 
remember that his oratorio "Elijah" ranks with the giant Han- 
del's best, and is being performed to this day more often than any 
other composition of its kind. 


The Mendelian theory of hereditary influences fìnds ample sup- 
port in the life and work of Arnold Mendelssohn (son of a cousin 
of the famous Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, and member of the 
rich German family of Mendelssohn) . 

Born in Ratibor, Germany, on December 26, 1855, Arnold was 
educated first for the bar, but eventually turned to music, and 
became organist and music teacher at Bonn University during 
1880-83. His first musical studies were pursued under Haupt, with 
whom he stucìied the organ, and continued under Grell, Wilsing, 
Kiel, Taubert and Loeschhorn. In 1885 he became teacher at the 
Cologne Conservatory, and in 1890 church choir-master in Darm- 
stadt, where in 1899 he received the degree of Grand Ducal Pro- 

In 1917 the University of Heidelberg bestowed on the composer 
an honorary Ph.D. Degree. In 1919 he was elected a member of 
the Berlin Academy of Art. Among his works are three operas, 
three sacred concertos, and many choral works and cantatas. 

He wrote also a symphony in E flat major, opus 85; a violin 
concerto, piano sonatas, opus 21 and 66; String Quartets, opus 
67 and 83 ; a very well known 'cello sonata, opus 70 ; a violin sonata, 
opus 71; a trio for two violins and piano; and a "Modern Suite," 
for piano, opus 77. 

Arnold Mendelssohn's works are distinguished by delicate feel- 
ing and perfection of form, which mark him a composer of late 
romantic tendencies. 




Darius Milhaud is another outstanding fìgure in the much-spoken- 
of Parisian "Groupe des Six." He is one of the fìery and brilliant 
apostles of today's revolutionary musical work. The influence 
exercised on him by the aesthetic theories 
of the poet, Jean Cocteau, shoulcl not de- 
ceive us as to the real nature of his in- 
spiration, for in spite of his moclernistic 
exterior, he is in fact a follower of the 
romantic tradition. His music often 
expresses a serious and religious feeling, 
which is likewise f ound in another, more 
famous modernist, Honegger, but which 
is entirely foreign to the preoccu- 
pations of the other members of the 

Darius Milhaud was born in Aix-en- 
Provence on September 4, 1892. Al- 
though of a Jewish Provencal family, he 
received his musical education in tlie capital, at the Paris Con- 
servatoire where he studied from 1910 to 1919. There his teacher 
in composition and fugue was Gedalge, and in the other branches 
of music Widor, D'Indy, and Leroux. 

Milhaud is one of the most interesting and gifted musicians 
of the young French modern schoòl. His extraordinary creative 
energy manifested itself at an early age. He could not, of course, 
escape the influence of Debussy, Stravinsky, Schonberg and Bela 
Bartok. His "Polytonal" works have caused many a storm among 
the conservatives. 

Although he is still in his middle thirties, Milhaud s work al- 
ready includes several lyrical dramas and symphonic works, five 
quartets, pieces for violin and for piano, songs and compositions 
for wind instruments. We must mention especially his "Eum- 
enido " "Protè," and the "Poèmes Juives." Some of Milhaud s work 
shows signs conflict and indecision, while others preserve those 
qualities of vigor and spontaneity, which, after all, give the real 
value to his best compositions. 

Early in 1923, Milhaud visited the United States, on which occa- 
sion the City Symphony Orchestra under Dirk Foch of New York 
performed two of his works, a "Symphonic Poem for Orchestra 
(conducted by the composer), and a "Ballade for piano and orches- 
tra," in which the composer played the piano solo. 

As leading 'cellist of that orchestra, the author of this book 

Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

has had the opportunity to play and study Milhaud's works, which 
are among the most interesting music we have heard from this 
composer. It is music completely of the present age, or the more 
superficial side of it; music of intensely nervous quality, ironic, and 
ol a drivmg energy— music that arrests the attention, and yet is 
barren of results. It is all nerves and mechanism, but no heart. 
lne writmg is extraordinarily accurate, and the effect is brilliant 
II nothmg more. 

On March 1, 1926, the International Referendum Orchestra 
gave a performance of Milhaud's Sixth Symphony at Chickering 
Hall, New York. This work, which is still in manuscript, is scored 
for vocal mixed quartet, oboe and 'cello. It is the last of a set of 
symphomes utilizing voices and various combinations of instru- 
ments. It was written by Milhaud after his recent visit to the 
Umted States, and in its three movements are reflected his impres- 
sions of the American scene. The voices are treated contrapun- 
tally. His "Hebrew Folk Songs" were also performed then. 


Louis Lewandowski represents a phenomenon in the field of 
synagogical singing. In 1871 he published his famous Kol Rinnoh 
Utfilloh, a collection of solos, part-choruses for small synagogues, 
and recitations for cantors. In these 
works Lewandowski achieved brilliant 
results by retaining the ancient motives, 
and ennobling them through his splendid 
harmonization, whereas previous to his 
day these chants, passing from mouth to 
mouth, were subjected to many corrup- 
tions. Encouraged by the success of these 
works, he published four years later a 
large volume of Sabbath chants for four 
voices, named Todah Wesìmroh. To 
this period belong also his arrangements 
of synagogal chants for the Nuremberg 
and Stettin congregations, and a num- 
ber of liturgical psalms with German 

Lewandowski was born on April 3, 1821, in Wreschen. He 
studied m Berhn, fìrst under A. Marx and later under Runhen- 
hagen and Grell. He was the fìrst Jew who had the good fortune 
to be a pupil at the Berlin Academy of Arts. For a round half- 
century he directed a synagogue choir until the day of his death 
on December 27, 1890. 

Composers 51 


THE historico-cultural significance of music never appeared so 
clearly as in the comic operas and operettas of Jacques Offenbach, 
f avorite composer of the French Revolution and musical illustrator 
of the demoralization and degeneration 
of that period. 

Son of a Jewish cantor in Kòln, Offen- 
bach for many years bore the honest 
name of Jacob, until he found it neces- 
sary to change it in Paris to Jacques. 
His father, Judah Offenbach (his full 
name was Judah Eberst), had a beautiful 
voice, and was the Chazan (cantor) of 
the orthodox synagogue. He who had 
published in 1839 a Jewish prayer book, 
never dreamed that his son would stray 
so far from the righteous path of his 
forefathers and would not only forsake 
their religion, but would also compose 
melodies which were open mockeries and burlesques of traditional 
synagogical chants. 

Whoever wished to become acquainted with French morals of 
the time of Napoleon III would necessarily have to take into ac- 
count Offenbachiana, as this musical buffoonery, brimming over 
with melodious jollity and super-refined caricature, is the very ex- 
pression of the society of Paris in the mid-nineteenth century. 

Jacques Offenbach was born June 21, 1819, and received his 
musical education in Paris. His fine 'cello playing at the local con- 
servatory attracted attention, but his fìrst attempts to appear as 
'cellist virtuoso were unsuccessf ul. He did, however, secure a post 
as 'cellist in the orchestra of the Queen's Opera. But this could 
not satisfy him for long. In 1847 he secured for the first time the 
position of conductor at the Theatre Francaise. His cherished 
dream was to compose for the theatre, and his fìrst success on the 
stage was his "Chanson de Fortunio." 

In 1872 he became entrepeneur of his own troupe. He under- 
took a tour of the United States, but was unsuccessful and had 
to return to Paris. 

Offenbach, representative of the Bouffe Parisienne, created by 
his works a whole school of music. Many composers of operettas 
owe a great debt to "Beautiful Helen" and "Orpheus in Hades," 
but none of them so far have succeeded in approaching him. Had 
Offenbach been a poet he would have been a parodist. As it was, 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

he created that form of music which we call "Burlesque Opera" or 
"Opera-Comique." Not unjustly did Rossini refer to him as the 
"Mozart of Paris." 

times the weakness of a child as well as a childish naivetè and good- 
ness. He was witty, talkative, jolly and happy-go-lucky, using his 
powers of sarcasm only when irritated. Of Wagner, for example, 
who visited him, he spoke angrily, assuring everyone that Wagner 
would have been the greatest composer, if he had no predecessors 
in Mozart, Glj^k, We^r, Beethoven and Men^ssohn, and that 
his melodies would have astounded by their originality if there 
had not existed previously HarrXÌd, Hale^y, Au^er and Bou^lien. 
Wagner's genius would then have stood beyond the pale of com- 
parison had he not as contemporaries Rossini and Meyerbeer. 

Offenbach had only one weakness, and that was vanity. No 
praise or compliments for his work ever appeared to him exag- 

Someone once asked him: "Were you born in Bonn?" "No," 
he answered, "Beethoven was born there, but I was born in K^ln." 

Although Offenbach wrote 102 works for the stage, all of them 
possessing that seductive grace which belongs to the best examples 
of French comic operas, Offenbach's fame and universal popularity 
were created mainly by his "Orpheus in Hades," "Beautif ul Helen/' 
"Paris Life," "Genevieve," "Blue Beard," and his "Tales of Hoff- 
man," which was his last work. To the "Tales" he gave the best 
and deepest that was in him. This work shows traces of the talent 
which Offenbach had, prior to his Parisian demoralization, when 
his light-hearted muse still retained some modesty and virginity. 
His popular success was due in part to his librettists, Milliac, Hal- 
evy, Blum, Cremier and others. 

A long and painful malady put an end to Offenbach's life on 
his sixty-fìrst year, October 5, 1880. The funeral of the king of 
light opera was unusually impressive. All of Paris was to be seen 
following the bier; aside from singers, actors, musicians, scien- 
tists and litterati, there was also many soldiers and statesmen — 
even the President of the Republique, and the Minister of Foreign 
Affairs sending representatives. 

As a man Offenbach 

He exhibited at 




"There is Meyerbeer, the creator of cyclopean melodies !", Liszt 
once exclaimecl. His bold operatic pictures undoubtedly stimulated 
Wagner for the great work he was to do. Although Wagner pro- 
claimed that he had no use for Jews, yet 
he frequently accepted aid from Meyer- 
beer, the son of a rich Jewish banker. 
The Wagnerians cannot, on general prin- 
ciples, forgive Meyerbeer for the fact 
that notwithstanding systematic houncl- 
ing by Wagner and his henchmen, the 
genius of Meyerbeer won for him a last- 
ing place in the operatic repertoires, not 
only of Germany and France, but of the 
whole civilized world. His operas "Le 
Prophete," "Les Huguenots," "L'Afri- 
caine," "Robert le Diable," "Dinorah," 
and others, will forever remain the de- 
light of the world's lovers of grand opera. 
It was against Meyerbeer that Wagner's pamphlet, "Judaism 
in Music," was mainly directed. It is true that Meyerbeer was 
born a Jew and remained one, not fìnding it necessary, as did many 
other famous composers, to wash off in baptism the "shame" ot 
his ancestry. Wagner's attack is a monstrous absurdity; ìt was 
Meyerbeer above all, who knew how to make use of all that was 
beautiful in music, no matter where he found it. Wagner's accu- 
uation that Meyerbeer drew from the works of others, could well 
be directed against a good many composers includmg Wagner 
himself In his "Rienzi" and other operas, did he not make good 
use of 'the efforts of his predecessors? As to "The Huguenots " 
there is a f amous bon-mot of Heine's, that in that opera the Cath- 
olics are killing the Protestants to musical strains written by a Jew. 

With the exception of Mozart and Weber, there is not a German 
composer whose influence has so powerf ully affected the Spanisn, 
Italian, French and other theatres as did that of Meyerbeer, the 
great musical cosmopolitan. His melodies became the common 
heritage of all peoples. 

Meyerbeer, whose real name was Jacob Liebman Beer, was born 
on September 5, 1791, in a covered wagon on the way to Frankfort- 
am-Oder where the Beers were traveling to the fair. He later 
changed his name when his grandfather promiscd to leave him his 
fortune on condition that he prefex "Meyer" to his patronym. He 
was the son of a rich banker, Jacob Herz Beer and his wife Amalia. 
His first teachers were Mendelssphn and Zelter. Later he studied 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

with Weber Abbt, Vogler and others. At the age of seven, he 
played splendidly on the piano; and to all appearances, should have 
been a great pianist, but his creative genius developecl early and 
eclipsed his virtuosity. By the age of 
twelve, he had alreacly written several 
songs, and by twenty, he wrote the can- 
tata, "God and Nature," fìrst presented 
on May 8, 1811, with much success, in 
the Berlin Singing Academy. Within 
the next year came his fìrst dramatic 
work, "The Daughter of Ephaia," and 
the operetta, "The Fisherman and the 

His fìrst operatic triumph was "Ali- 
melech," performed in Stuttgart. Weber 
himself spoke highly of this work. In 
Vienna, where the young composer went 
in October, 1814, to stage "Alimelech," 
he met Beethoven. Meyerbeer reached his heights when he wrote 
his opera, "The Crusaders in Egypt," presented for the fìrst time 
in 1825 in Venice. This opera made the rounds of Europe and was 
even played in Rio de Janeiro, being everywhere a popular success. 

In Paris Meyerbeer founcl his ideal librettist, Eugene Scribe,' 
who had almost exclusively the gift of creating romantic, histori- 
cal and demonical librettos. It was he who wrote the libretto of 
"Robert le Diable," whose premiere took place in the Paris Grand 
Opera, and whose triumphal march over the operatic boards of 
the world continues to this day. 

After completing this opera, Meyerbeer rested for fìve years, 
writing only smaller pieces. In February, 1836, the long-awaited 
"Les Huguenots" was given in Paris. It is hard to imagine what 
a deep impression this opera made at its premiere. In this opera 
are unitecl poetry, clrama, and painting. Heine wrote on that 

occasion in the Augsburg newspaper the following lines : "Meyer- O 
beer is undoubtedly the greatest of the living masters of counter- £ 
point. He is the greatest painter in music." "The Huguenots" 
was received with similar enthusiasm in Germany. 

The Berlin Academy elected Meyerbeer a member, and King 
Frederich Wilhelm IV appointed him general music director of 
Prussia. The composer, however, generously refused to accept 
the 3000 marks annual salary, turning it over to the orchestra. 

December 7, 1844, saw the opening of the new building of the 
Berlin Opera. The occasion was celebrated by a presentation of 
Meyerbeer's pompous work "A Camp in Schleswig," which was 
metamorphosed into the opera "The North Star." The principal 



role of this opera, that of Vielki, was written for the "Swedish 
Nightingale" Jenny Lincl. When in 1840, Meyerbeer went to 
Vienna, Jenny Lind and he repeated their triumph. 

Some of the letters written from that city to a f riend are quite 
humorous: "My stay in Vienna was somewhat in the nature of 
being in golden fetters. It is as though I am condemned to 'sit.' 
I sit at the piano, at the score ; in the morning I sit at the table, 
in the evening I sit in the lodge, and during the day I have to sit 
for twenty-four lithographers, three dozen etchers, sixteen carvers 
in wood, ten acquarellists, and four miniaturists. . . . Too much 
incense of immortality for one time. This in itself is enough to 
break down any man, be he of the stoutest health. . . ." 

During the same year Meyerbeer gave the world one of the 
gems of genius — "Struensee," which he dedicated to the memory 
of his brother, Michael Beer. A year later, on April 16, 1849, 
his third great opera, "Le Prophete," was given in the Paris Grand 
Opera House. Neither the revolution, nor even the plague of 
cliolera could lessen the tremendous success of this work. This 
time, as always, Meyerbeer's triumph was followed by interest on 
the part of the Napoleon governments. The President of the Re- 
public appointed him Chevalier of Honor, and the Iena Uni- 
versity awarded him the honorable title of Doctor of Music. 

Meyerbeer was very superstitious. Vanity was strange to his 
frank and modest nature, but in one instance he showed a sur- 
prising weakness: when on certain occasions he had to wear the 
uniform of a member of the Academy of Arts, he wore his sabre 
with as much swagger and pomp as if in it were sheathed the very 
genius of music. 

He had one other weakness on the score of his abihty as ac- 
companist. He used to say : "I do not know whether I am a good 
composer, but I do know that I am a great accompanist." Never- 

theless, not one singer who played with him was inclined to dis- 

agree with him. 

On April 4, 1859, his opera "Dinorah" was presented, but 
"L'Af ricaine" had to wait until 1865, almost a year after his death, 
when it was performed in Paris. This grand swan song assures 
Meyerbeer of immortality, even if no other work of his should 
remain. . 

Death's shadow descended over the great composer and gemal 
soul on May 2, 1864. He died in Paris in the house which is now 
known as the "Hotel Meyerbeer" on the Champs Elysèes. His 
remains were afterwards taken to Berlin for entombment ìn the 
family vault. 

56 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Ignatz Moscheles has the distinction not only of composing fìne 
scores which are still in modern repertoires, but of having been 
the first Jew to make himself acceptable in the artistic and critical 
circles of London. That Mendelssohn 
founded the Leipzig conservatory is 
known to everyone, but a great cleal of 
the honor is due to Moscheles. 

Moscheles was practically unequalled 
in his day for his piano technique. For 
many years he gave concerts all over the 
Continent, and was enthusiastically re- 
ceived, not only because of the brilliance 
of his playing but because of its artistic 
and deeply-felt interpretation of the 
great classical works. All the great mu- 
sicians and critics of the day spoke with 
enthusiasm of Moscheles' playing of Hay- 
dn, Mozart and Beethoven. Beethoven 
himself often mentioned him as one of the greatest of his inter- 
preters. Robert Schumann, who heard him for the fìrst time in 1819 
in Karlsbad, was deeply impressed and undoubtedly influenced by 
him. Here is what he wrote to his older colleague, Moscheles, on 
November 20, 1851, when the latter dedicated his sonata for piano 
and 'cello to him : "Could I dream thirty years ago, when in Karls- 
bad and being entirely unknown to you (I have preserved as a 
treasure an announcement of that concert) , that I would some day 
deserve such flattering attention on the part of a famous virtuoso, 
dedicating to me such a work of genius. Accept my heartfelt 

As to Moscheles' activities and abilities as teacher, the f act that 
he was the teacher and musical guide of Mendelssohn speaks vol- 
umes. Of exceptional value were his activities as instructor at the 
conservatory, where he had large classes, many of his graduates 
later becoming famous musicians. His friends and colleagues sin- 
cerely admired him, and as a composer, Moscheles created for him- 
self an honorable place in music. His G minor sonata for piano 
and 'cello, as well as his piano concerto "Au Pathetique" belong 
among the best classic works. But it was as a man even more than 
as an artist that Moscheles was most admired by all who knew him. 
His editions and arrangements of the great German classics for the' 
English speaking countries have proved a valuable contribution. 

Moscheles was born in Prague on May 30, 1794. There he be- 



gan his musical studies, uncler the guiclance of Friedrich Dionistus 
Weber, and later studied in Vienna under Albrechtsberger and 
Salieri. Moscheles kept up an intimate frienclship with Clementi 
and Beethoven. In 1849 Moscheles arranged for the piano under 
Beethoven's guiclance, a f ragment f rom the latter's opera "Fidelio." 
In 1825 Moscheles came to London, young and ardent, with con- 
certos ancl sonatas of such quality under his arm, that the world 
turned to examine them, and the composers too. Soon after his 
arrival in that city, we fìnd him succeeding Sir Henry Bishop as 
conductor of the London Philharmonic Society. 

Moscheles is also known as a writer of great ability and excel- 
lent style. In 1841 he translated into English and published Shind- 
ler's biography of Beethoven. 

He clied on March 10, 1870, in Leipzig. 


Siegfried Ochs, one of the most gifted composers and choral con- 
ductors of our time, was born on April 19, 1859, in Frankfort-am- 
Main. Upon graduation f rom High School he began teaching chem- 
istry, first in the Politechnique at Darm- 
stadt, ancl later at Heiclelberg University. 
But his passionate love for music was 
little satisfiecl by his playing the tympani 
in the local orchestra. 

At the age of twenty-three, he entered 
the Berlin Royal High School of music, 
where he stuclied under Ernest Rudorg, 
Schulz, Kiel and Urban. Ochs was found- 
er and conductor of the Philharmonic 
Choral Society in Berlin, which he 
brought into quite extraordinary promi- 
nence. Unfortunately, he had to dissolve 
it in the Summer of 1920 owing to un- 
favorable conditions. He is now conduct- 
ing the choral class of the Berlin High School of Music. Of special 
interest are his efforts to introduce British and American music in 

Ochs's first compositions include a set of variations and paro- 
dies on the theme, "Kommt ein Vogel Geflogen." He became noted 
for his fìne songs, duets, piano pieces for four hands, canons, and 
also for his text and music "In the Name of the Law," which was 
produced in Hamburg in 1888 with considerable success. 

58 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


An exceptional composer is Moses Michail Milner, the young 
Russian who is being compared, for the vividness and melo- 
diousness and realism of his style, with Mocìest Moussorgsky. 

Contrary to Kreyn and Gniessin, he did 
not have to start in search of forgotten 
paths of his people. A son of his people 
who never lost contact with them, he is 
brimful of Jewish folk-music and folk- 
lore. He has an intense feeling, which 
shows in the originality, the tender lyric- 
ism, the scenes full of humor, and the 
powerful and expressive choruses of his 
works. Aside from a considerable num- 
ber of small pieces, which have already 
won great popularity, he has written the 
opera "Ashmodai," and "The Heavens 
Are Aflame" — the fìrst purely I Jewish 
work in operatic form. 
During the past few years Milner wrote among other things: 
"Symphonic Suite," and "Symphony on Hebrew themes" for or- 
chestra, as well as many songs. 

Milner has undoubtedly been influenced by Moussorgsky, for he 
has an undeniable kinship with him. 


Lady Jean Paul, youngest daughter of Henry Wieniaski, the cele- 
brated violinist, has assumed this misleading nom-de-plume in her 
brilliant career as composer. Born in Brussels, her musical edu- 
cation, from the age of seven till twelve, began in the "Cours" of 
Miss Ellis. Continuing at the Conservatoire, she won the fìrst 
prize in preparation and solf eggio. At this institution she studied 
the piano under Professor Stork, and composition under Gevaert. 
Coming to England, she continued composition under Percy Pitt, 
and piano under Professor Michael Hambourg. After her mar- 
riage to Sir Aubrey Dean Paul, she went to Paris to study under 
Andre Gedalge, but was tragically interrupted by the death of her 
fìrst child. When she returned to Paris, she resumed her music 
under Vincent d'Indy at the Schola Cantorum. 

The earliest compositions of Poldowski were piano pieces writ- 
ten at the age of fìve — followed within four years by an "Oriental 
Suite," the manuscript of which is lost. 



Poldowski is one of the unusual artists whose aesthetic evolution 
has sensitively followed the natural tendencies of her sex, rather 
than being influenced by the desire to emulate the masculine which 
so often renders feminine art abortive. Hence, her originality of 
conception and expression, her naturally modern taste in form, 
thematic material and particularly harmonic substance, reveal 
an innate inclination for freedom, but are never merely icono- 
clastic. In a musical sense, almost a daughter of Debussy, she 
shares this composer's fastidious delicacy of taste. Always in her 
music she makes the aristocratic gesture. 

The key to Poldowski's music is her intense humanity, none the 
less profound because it does not fìnd it necessary to express itself 
in heavy pretentiousness. Her humanity carries her to the heights 
as well as to the clepths of comprehending expression. 

Among the works of Poldowski are "Pat Malone's Wakes," for 
piano and orchestra, "Caledonian Market Suite" for piano, many 
songs, a violin and piano Sonata, "Suite Miniature de Chansons 
à Danser," for eight woodwind instruments, performed, with "Pat 
Malone's Wake," on various occasions, under Sir Henry Wood at 
Queen's Hall, together with three clarinet pieces, a symphonic 
drama, "Silence," a light opera, "Laughter," three songs with 
string quartet accompaniment — all as yet unpublished. 


To Maurice Ravel belongs priority among the composers of the 
French Modern School. Chabrier, Faurè, and Satie exercised a 
greater influence in the formation of his genius than did Debussy. 

Ravel was born on March 7, 1875, in 
Ciboure, France, near the Spanish bor- 
der, and was educated in Paris. In child- 
hood he showed an extraordinary and 
peculiar sense of rhythm, as well as gen- 
eral musical ability. At the Conserva- 
toire he studied piano under the famous 
De Bèriot, and under Pessard he studied 
• harmony. His earlier works are the 
"Habanera" (1895) and the "Rhapsodie 
Espagnole." But his thirst for more 
advanced musical knowledge and partic- 
ularly counterpoint necessitated further 
study, and he devoted himself to this 
study under Gedalge and Gabriel Faurè. 
He resembles the latter in his ability to 
maintain a respect for classical formulae while adopting extreme 
harmony and rhythm. 

60 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In the year 1901 Ravel won the second Prix cle Rome for a can- 
tata, "Myrrha," which he hacl treated in operetta style (a piece of 
irony which his judges failed to appreciate). In 1904 a quartet 
in F definitely brought Ravel to public notice. It is masterly in its 
combination of classical form with purely modern harmony; its 
emotion is delicate, and one melodic theme arises out of another 
without the slightest sense of mechanical effort. In the same year 
Ravel gained another success with his three melodies for voice and 
orchestra, "Scheherazade," a miracle of musical impressionism. 
The "Rhapsodie Espagnole" revealed his gift for local colour; he 
put the entire science of orchestration at the service of an inspi- 
ration sometimes gay, sometimes homesick. His clainty "Haba- 
nera" was later included in the "Rhapsodie Espagnole." "Ma 
Mere l'Oye" (1908) is a collection of musical interpretations of 
fairy tales written fìrst as pianoforte duets, and remodeled in 1919 
for the Thèatre des Arts. In this piquant fairy tale Maurice Ravel 
brings out with extraordinary brilliance the legendary and never- 
never character of the stories, which he took from Mother Goose. 
The orchestration is as delicate and diaphanous as Brussels lace. 
In the "Histoires Naturelles" (1907) he introduced a new humor- 
ous style in which irony and lyrical feeling alternate and combine 
in the most unexpected fashion. 

A still more perfect work of Ravel's, one which may be con- 
sidered a chef d'oeuvre, is the famous choreographic ballet, "Daph- 
nis et Chloe," produced on March 8, 1921, by Diaghilef's Russian 
Ballet, directed by Fokine. The vigour of its rhythm, its beautiful 
melodies and the expressiveness of its harmonies gained over even 
the most prejudicecl listeners. 

His "Heure Espagnole" achieved a triumph in 1921 at the Mon- 
naie Theatre in Brussels, and in 1922 at the Opera in Paris. This 
opera has since entered the repertoires of the great operatic organ- 
izations of the world, including the Metropolitan Opera House of 
New York, where its brilliant premiere in 1925 was a memorable 
event. It is a work vibrant with life and emotion, tenderness and 
understanding of its theme. 

In his "La Valse" (1922) and "Tombeau de Couperin" he 
proved his great mastery of the gentle art of instrumentation, He 
has a special affection for the woodwinds whose piquancy and deli- 
cacy no one knows so well how to utilize. In none of his works can 
Ravel be accused of striving for cheap effects, either in theme or in 
instrumentation. For transparency of tone, perfect balance, play- 
fulness and delicious color-blenclings, he has no equal. The list of 
his independent works and arrangements is too lengthy to be in- 
cluded wholly in this volume. His outstanding works are: 

"Menuet Antique," 1895; "Pavane pour une Infante defunte," 
1899; "Jeux d'Eaux," 1901; "Miroirs," 1905; "Sonatine," 1905; 



"Gaspard cle la Nuit," 1908; "Minuet on the name of Haycln," 
1909; "Valse Nobles et Sentimentales," 1911; "Ma Mere l'Oye," 
Suite for violin and piano, 1908; "Tzigane," (first performance, 
London, April 27, 1924); "Scheherzade," 1903; "Histoires Na- 
turelles," 1906; "Sur l'Herbe," 1907; "Vocalise en forme d'Ha- 
banera," 1907; Five Greek Folk Songs, 1907; Three poems, for 
pianoforte, string quartet, two fiutes and two clarinets, 1913; 
"String quartet," 1902-3; "Sonata for 'cello and violin," 1922; 
"Introduction and Allegro" for harp, strings, flute and clarinet, 
1906 ; "Rhapsodie Espagnole," 1907 ; "La Valse," 1922 ; "Daphnis 
et Chloe," a balìet, 1906, first performecl in Paris in 1912 ; "l'Heure 
Espagnole," a musical comedy, 1907. 

His newest opera, "L'Enfant et les Sortilèges," was performed 
on February 26, 1926, at the Opera Comique in Paris. 

In his search for new ancl delicate tone combinations Maurice 
Ravel in his new opera added to the conventional instruments a 
whip, a rattle, a xylophone, a slide flute, a curious piano with f our 
stops callecl a "Lutheal," and a nutmeg grater. Full of daring inno- 
vations in harmony and instrumentation, Ravel's score, notwith- 
standing protests of the music critics, is held by many persons to 
add to his reputation as one of France's foremost composers. The 
book by Mme. Colette, whose animal stories have gained for her 
the title of the French Kipling, is worthy of the music. Fanciful 
and whimsical, the work is enjoying a popular success. Among 
the novelties are two fox-trots, danced by the Teapot and the Chi- 
nese Teacup, with the regulation stopped trumpets and eccentric 
drum beats. They never fail to arouse enthusiasm. It is the fìrst 
time the orchestra of the Opera Comique has played f ox-trots. 

It was at the request of Sergei Koussevitzky that Ravel scored 
the "Tableaux d'une Exposition" of Moussorgsky for the orches- 
tra, as this work was originally written for the piano, and it may 
be added that it is due entirely to the great genius of the orches- 
tration of Ravel that this work has taken on a new lease of lif e. 

Keen interest is aroused by the visit which Ravel will make 
to the United States in 1928, to expound his own music. His first 
American appearance will be with the Boston Symphony on Janu- 
ary 10, following which he will come to New York to give the 
American premiere of his new sonata for violin and piano. The 
organization Pro-Musica, is primarily responsible for his visit to 
this country. 

62 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Solomon Rosovsky, the talented composer and director of the 
Jewish Conservatory at Tel Aviv, Palestine, the only existing Jew- 
ish institution of its kind, belongs to that brave handful of ideal- 

Entermg the St. Petersburg Conservatory, he studied composition 
with Liadoff, mstrumentation with Rimsky-Korsakoft', and free 
composition with Vitol and Glazounoff. After finishing his studies 
m this mstitution, he accepted an invitation in 1911 to become 
musical editor of the St. Petersburg Djen. He served in that ca- 
pacity for six years. 

^ Toward the end of 1907, Rosovsky, together with several other 
ìdeahstic friends, organized the renowned Society for Jewish Folk 
Music. These men, Nesvijesky (Abilea) the pianist, and Tomars 
the tenor, are responsible with Rosovsky for the vitality of this 
organization. Its object was the renaissance of Jewish folk music, 
and it suffered untold hardships during its early days because of 
the persistent persecution at the hands of the Russian Government, 
supported by time-serving journalists. Rosovsky was one of the 
most active fighters in its cause. Besides giving concerts in differ- 
ent cities of Russia, he used his musical editorship of Djen as a 
means to fìght the enemies of the movement. He also wrote in 
Noviy Woschocl and Rassivet. 

In 1918 he was invited to be musical producer of the Jewish 
Kammer Theatre, in St. Petersburg, f or which theatre he also wrote 
music for different plays, among them "The Sinner," by Ash; 
"Amnein," "Tomar," and "Uriel Acosta." 

In 1919 he returned to Riga, his birthplace, and opened a Jew- 
ìsh Conservatory on a large scale. It was the fìrst time such a 

ists who worked valiantly, in spite of 
handicaps, for the advancement of Jew- 
ish folk-music. 

Rosovsky was born in Riga in 1878, 
and is the son of Baruch Leib Rosovsky, 
a well-known cantor of Riga's principal 
synagogue. After being graduated f rom 
the town's high school, he studied law 
at the University of Kiev. Here he had 
only a battered old piano to practice on, 
and the dreamy-eyed boy found not a 
single soul interested in his àspirations. 
His musical education really began after 
his graduation from the university, when 
he decided to let his law go by the board. 



school, devoted to Jewish culture, was founded in Russia. He also 
organized branches of his society, whose progress the Revolution 
temporarily arrested. 

Rosovsky is a very prolifìc composer. He has written both 
chamber, vocal and instrumental music. Some of his important 
works are two quintets for woocl-winds; a "nigun on a sof" for 
orchestra ; "Kadciish," "Kol Nidrei," and "Hatikvah" arranged f or a 
capella ; a piano suite in three movements ; a trio f or piano, violin 
and 'cello; "Fantastic Dance," written on chassidic themes. The 
latter composition was later arranged for symphonic orchestration 
and successfully played by various orchestras. 

The synagogue element is very strong in his work — a heritage 
of his father, who for forty-eight years was cantor of Riga's most 
notable synagogue. But Rosovsky, imbued with the teachings of 
his professors, gained f rom them a strong appreciation of folk-lore. 
He is at present working on an opera, and is active as pedagogue 
and composer. The musical renaissance in Palestine owes most 
to him. 


The music of Sigmuncl Romberg exercises a spell that few can 
resist. He is the creator of innumerable melodies that have been 
sung, played and reproduced on phonographs and piano in homes, 
ball rooms, concert halls, and theatres. His most popular melody 
is perhaps "Auf Wiedersehen," originally sung in "The Blue Para- 
dise," which has nettecl him over $15,000 in royalties. Other 
song hits, which have brought him both profìt and popularity, in- 
clude "Sweetheart," "My Senorita," "Dream Waltz," "Song of 
Love," "Mother," "Omar Khayyam," and "Oh, Those Days." 

At the present time, the name of Romberg is identified with 
"The Student Prince," one of the outstanding successes of the- 
atrical year of 1925-26. For this musical version of "Alt Heidel- 
berg," Romberg has supplied the complete score of twenty-three 
musical numbers. It is his masterpiece. Entirely free from the 
barbaric influence of jazz and from the lurid wail of the saxophone, 
this musical play revives pleasant memories of his two former suc- 
cesses, "Maytime" and "Blossom Time." 

During the same season Romberg was represented in fìve other 
musical productions — "Marjorie," "Artists and Models," "The 
Dream Girl," "The Passing Show," "Annie Dear," and "Louis 

Sigmund Romberg never had to suffer financial hardships. 
Born about thirty-nine years ago, of Jewish parents, near Szeged, 


Famous Musicians of a Wanclerincj Race 

Hungary, his education was most liberal, including technical and 
academic training. 

For three years he studied harmony and counterpoint privately 
under Victor Heuberger, a noted teacher of Vienna. 

Although he studied engineering with the intention of becoming 
a bridge builder, he soon discovered that his forte was music. As 
an ardent amateur, he assiduously practiced musical composition 
before coming to America. The melodies of Strauss and Lehar 
enchanted him and gave him his fìrst inspiration.. 

About thirteen years ago he reached New York with a letter 
of introduction from Franz Lehar to J. J. Shubert, the Broadway 

For a time the f uture composer was a pianist in the Caf e Boule- 
vard on Second Avenue near Tenth Street, where Eric von Stro- 
heim, now a famous movie-director, worked as cashier. That was 
about twelve years ago. His opportunity came when Shubert com- 
missioned him to write the music for a Winter Garden productionj 
"The Whirl of the World," presented in 1914. Romberg did a good 
job, and attracted the favorable attention of the music critics. 
Since then he has steadily progressed to his present position. 

Like most Hungarians, Romberg is sentimental by nature. Two 
summers ago he visitecì his parents, residing in Crotia. But fìrst 
he took a flying trip to Belgrade, where he assembled a thirty-six 
piece orchestra. Returning to his parents, he invited both to attend 
a concert given solely for themselves. Af ter distributing the scores 
of his best musical compositions, Romberg mounted the platform 
and conducted a performance of all his works, himself acting as 
conductor. Whenever his aged parents applauded, he bowed his 
acknowledgments as if in the presence of a vast audience. "That 
was the greatest thrill of my life," he said. 

Not all of us can appreciate the music of Wagner or Beethoven, 
for which a taste must be cultivated. But there is a kind of music 
to which we universally respond. Such is the music evolved by the 
masters of light opera. And in this fìeld Sigmund Romberg is 
America's foremost representative. 




Bernard Rogers, who belongs to the clique of young American 
modernists, was born in New York, on February 4, 1893, and re- 
ceived his general education in the grade and high schools of New 
York and New Rochelle. He began the study of piano privately at 
the age of twelve. He left school when fìfteen, and for a brief 
period studied architecture at Columbia University in the eve- 
nings. About this time Rogers began the study of theory with 
Hans Van den Berg, with whom he remained for two years. He 
became a member of the staff of Musical America in December, 
1913. In 1916 he began the study of harmony and composition 
under Ernest Bloch and Rubin Goldmark. The same year he went 
to Amsterdam and spent a brief period in study there. Return- 
ing to New York, he resumed his lessons with Bloch for two more 
years. In November, 1919, his "Dirge" was played by the New 
York Philharmonic in Carnegie Hall, New York, and the following 
Spring the same work won the Pulitzer Traveling Scholarship. Mr. 
Rogers went to Paris during the Summer of 1920, and again visited 
Europe the following year. Returning to America, he studied com- 
position with Percy Goetschius at the Institute of Musical Art in 
New York, and later went to the Cleveland Institute of Music for 
further study with Bloch. He returned to New York in March, 
1923, and resumed his work on the staff of Musical America. His 
"Prelude" to "The Faithful," Masefield's tragedy, was played at 
the Metropolitan Opera House by the State Symphony under Josef 
Stransky on February 3, 1924. His compositions include a number 
of songs, works for chamber music ensemble, an aria, "Buona 
Notte," f or tenor voice and orchestra ; a dramatic scene, "Aladdin," 
for tenor, bass solo and orchestra. On April 29, 1927, Bernard 
Roger's new symphony, "Adonais," had its fìrst performance in 
Rochester, N. Y., at the Eastman Theatre's sixth American com- 
posers' concert, being played before an enthusiastic audience. 

"Adonais" was composed in 1925-26 in Kent, Scotland. It is 
based on poems of Shelley, "Prometheus Unbound" and "Adonais." 
The symphony is in two parts, the fìrst in strict sonata f orm and of 
large dimensions, and the second quieter in character and with 
much scoring for strings woodwinds and harps. 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Among the greatest composers and pianists of all time belongs 
Anton Rubmstein. In him the artist poignantly fulfìlled the man 
As a pianist, he was rivaled only by Liszt, and after Liszt's death, 
by nobody. His head, with its brow of a 
thinker and a poet's melancholy eyes, 
was compared to Beethoven's. For many 
years Rubinstein was dictator in the 
realm of piano playing. He was consid- 
ered the greatest interpreter, not only 
of his own works, but of the great classic 
masters as well. In 1841, when Liszt 
heard the playing of the twelve-year-old 
boy^ he shouted with great enthusiasm : 
"This is the genius who is going to be my 
heir at the piano !" 

Rubinstein was born in the village of 
Vikhvatinetz, on November 28, 1830. His 
, . i . „ . mother, an accomplished pianist, gave 

him his fìrst lessons. The fìrst public concert of the "Wunderkind" 
took place when he was ten. 

At that time there was only one city in Europe where world- 
fame could be gamed, and that city was Paris. There Rubinstein 
V£l e Ì 1 ^ 11Satlon - U w f also in that magic city that he met 
Liszt and Chopm From that time on young Rubinstein's studies 
were guic ed by Liszt. It was by his advice that Rubinstein, to- 
gether with his teacher, Villoing, went to Germany, giving concerts 
en route, m England, Holland, Germany, and the Scandinavian 
countries. In 1845 we see Rubinstein in Berlin, studying theorv 
under Den, and composition under Marks, by the advice of Men- 
frieTids" Me ^ ei,bee ^ who were Madame Rubenstein's close 

When Rubinstein's father died in 1846, the boy with his mother, 
brother and sister, retiirned to Moscow. From that time on Anton 
had to look for himself, through a long period of dire want, bitter 
struggle and unremitting work. ' 

PpfÌt l ^! i nSt 1 n ' S T Star ?° ne bright when in 1848 he returned to St. 
Petersburg for here he found a patron in the person of Princess 

^trlr a r na ;- T ^ ai ^ S t0 her advice and aid ' and to his own 
energetic activrties the Russian Music Society was founded by him 
m 1859 with himself at its head. He succeeded in attracting there 
as teachers such famous men as Leschetizk, Wieniawsky, Zaramba 
Hennetta, Niessen-Solomon and others. Among his fìrst pupils of 



the school were Tschaikowsky, Annette Essipova, Vera Timanova 
ancl others. 

In 1862 a long-cherished dream of the composer came true : the 
fìrst Russian Conservatory was f ounded in St. Petersburg, of which 
he was the first dìrector, retaining this post until 1867. The found- 
ing of the M'usic Society and the Conservatory would alone have 
assured Anton Rubinstein immortality in his own country, for 
whose music no one either before or after him has done so much. 
But Rubinstein was not content with a virtuoso's and director^s 
laurels. He wanted to compose. His native vanity painted in his 
imagination great dreams. He wrote numberless compositions in 
imitation of Meyerbeer, Mendelssohn and even of Beethoven. But 
he was most active in the field of dramatic music, enriching the 
operatic repertoire with a succession of operas, including "Dmitry 
Donskoy " in three acts, and three one-act operas, "Khadjhi 
Abrek," "The Siberian Hunters," and "Tomka the Fool." His 
greatest triumph he achieved in "Demon," "Feramors," "The Mac- 
cabeans," and "Nero." , 

Rubinstein the composer has the same characteristics as Rubin- 
stein the virtuoso. He strives for what he considers the highest 
expression in music, and troubles little about purely aural effects. 
This does not prevent his work f rom possessing moments of tender 
lyricism and poetic grace. . 

Traces of his Jewish origin are seen in his "Maccabeans, given 
at the Berlin Royal Opera House in Berlin on April 15, 1878. In 
this opera the biblical spirit reigns supreme, especially towards the 
end He endeavored to give it throughout an onental character, 
and' with this in view, he, like Meyerbeer and Halevy, drew upon 
the old Synagogal chants and melodies. His appreciation of the 
genius of his race is shown in his admiration for and interest in 
such subjects as were written about by Jewish poets, such as 
Julius Rodenberg, Rudolph Levenstein and Hermann Mosenthal. 

Rubinstein also wrote the biblical opera "Moses " in eight 
scenes, after Mosenthal's text; also "Hagar in the Desert, and the 
oratorios "The Tower of Babel," "Paradise Lost," and Sulamith. 
In all these works is seen the composer's deep rehgious nature. 

Rubinstein was as great a conductor as he was a piamst and 
composer. He was born to reign supreme over the orchestra as 
over the keyboards. He was a great f avorite of the Czars Nicholas 
I, Alexander II, and Alexander III, f rom whom he received many 

C1V1 His 0 motner's maiden name was Levenstein. She waa born in 
Prussian Silesia. Anton's grandfather, Ruvim Rubmstem, rented 
the lands in Berdichev from Count Radziwil. He was honored by 
his co-religionists, and had the reputation of a pious Jew and 
learned Talmudist. For some reason, however, he decided to con- 

68 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

vert himself and his whole family to Christianity. He received at 
the christening the surname Roman, and Anton's future father 
was christened Gregory. He was the owner of a pen and pencil 
factory which did not prosper. 

Rubinstein's own point of view on the subject of nationality 
and racial afRliation is shown in a letter to a friend, which we quote 
in part : "In lif e a republican ancl radical, I am in art a conserva- 
tive and despot; for the Jews I am a Christian, for the Christians 
a Jew; for the Russians a German, for the Germans a Russian; for 
the classicist a futurist, for the futurists a retrograde. From this 
I conclude that I am neither fìsh nor meat — a sorrowf ul individual, 
indeed !" 

Rubinstein had among his friends in Berlin, Auerbach, Joachim 
and Henrich Herlich. 

During his lifetime he receivecl innumerable honors, among 
which were the Order of the Grand Cross of St. Stanislaus, which 
was awarded him after he was made an "Actual Consular of State" 
with the title of "Excellency." The whole musical world was deeply 
moved by the news of this honor, and inundated him with letters 
and telegrams of felicitation, for he was the fìrst musician (and a 
Jew at that) to receive such distinction from Russian monarchs. 
Rubinstein himself was so deeply moved by these signal honors 
conferred upon him that he thought them incompatible with the 
exercise of his profession as a musician, that is, of playing before 
the public for money. Nor was the St. Petersburg University slow 
in recognizing his services and accomplishments, for it awarded 
him the -honorary degree of Doctor of Music. Stipendiums f or needy 
and deserving students were founded by this Conservatory in his 
honor. Friends ordered marble busts of him. 

Rubinstein himself was anything but rich. He lived on the pen- 
sion of 3,000 roubles which the Czar's government had allotted him 
in recognition of his services to the art of music in Russia, and for 
the innumerable concerts he had given for the benefit of Russian 
charitable societies. He was exceedingly generous with his money, 
giving it away freely for the upkeep of needy musicians, and for 
other charitable purposes. It was due to his aid that the monument 
to Glinka was erected in Smolensk, his native town. The remark- 
able American tour (1872-73) netted him $40,000 for 215 concerts, 
and so popular did he become there that he was afterwards offered 
$125,000 for only 50 concerts, but could not overcome his dread of 
the voyage. 

Leopold Auer, the famous violin teacher, in his book, My Long 
Life in Music, says of Rubinstein, who was his intimate friend 
and companion on concert tours: "The grandeur of style with 
which Rubinstein played, the beauty of tone, his softness of touch 
are indescribable. Whosoever of my readers was so fortunate as 



to have heard Anton Rubinstein will understand the astonishment 
and enthusiasm I f elt. Very simple of manner, without affectation 
of importance, he was charming in his relations with all artists, 
and, indeed, with all whom he regarded as devoted to the true cause 
of music. 

"Rubinstein died suddenly during the night in his villa at Peter- 
hof, of aneurism, on November 20, 1894. It is pleasant to think, 
however, that Rubinstein felt well on the last day of his life— a 
small measure of consolation for his irreparable loss. There had 
been company to dinner, a game of whist afterward, and everyone, 
guests and host, had parted at eleven o'clock in the very best of 
spirits ; by twelve Rubinstein had ceased to exist. 

"His body was brought to St. Petersburg the following day on a 
catafalque, escorted by the professors and students of the conserva- 
tory, to one of the big churches, where it was exposed in state for 
twenty-f our hours, the casket guarded night and day by prof essors 
of the conservatory in deep mourning. Vassily Safonoff, then quite 
a young professor, had come from Moscow as a member of the 
deputation sent by that conservatory, and he and Leopold Auer 
were a part of the guard of honor at the catafalque on this occasion. 
On the day of the burial the Nevsky Prospekt was barred to trafflc, 
and thousands followed the flower-laden coach as it advanced slowly 
and solemnly to the Monastery graveyard, where Anton Rubinstein 
now lies in peace, not far from Tschaikowsky and Borodine." 

Anton Rubinstein's most beautiful and enduring monument is 
of his own making, for the composer's generosity survived him. 
In his will he set aside a fund of 25,000 gold roubles for the award 
of the Rubinstein piano and composition prize. Competitions for 
young pianists and composers, according to this will, Avere to be 
held every five years, beginning 1890, in Paris, St. Petersburg, 
Vienna and Berlin. The prize, now known as the "Rubinstein 
Prize," is 5,000 francs. 

Rubinstein was a tyrant where his plans were concerned. By 
his energy he succeeded in forcing the government to establish an 
opera house in the capital of each government, and a conservatory 
and music school in every large city. In these schools composition 
and theory are compulsory subjects, according to Rubmstein's 
orders, and no one can receive a music diploma without at least 
four years of elementary education in a gymnasium. This plan 
has been copied by the world's leading musical institutions, includ- 
ing the famous Damrosch Conservatory in New York. 

Among Rubinstein's f amous pupils is Josef Hofmann, who came 
to him at St. Petersburg f rom Leipzig. 

It was due largely to Rubinstein's efforts that Russia holds a 
place among musically enlightened countries of the world, inferior 
to none, and superior to most, 

70 Famous Musicians of a Wanderìng Race 


Camille Saint-SaÈns embodies one of the many aspects of the 
French temperament — that in which the mind and intelligence 
supplant sentiment and even emotion, as in the case of a Voltaire 
or a Rameau. That is, of course, as long 
as Saint-Saèns remained the patriotic 
Frenchman — a patriot who could attack 
Wagner f or no better reason than that he 
was German. But as soon as the same 
Saint-Saèns dug down to the roots of his 
own being and for once forgot that he 
was above all a Frenchman, he succeeded 
in composing his one immortal work, a 
work written on a biblical theme, in 
which he freely employed the Hebrew 
scale. In his "Samson et Delila," not 
only one of the master's best operas (per- 
haps even the very best) , but one of the 
fìnest dramatic works produced by any 
French composer during the last fìfty years, Saint-Saèns com- 
pelled the admiration of musicians as well as of the general public, 
perhaps for the very reason that when he wrote it he did not at' 
tempt to please either, but was content to follow ancestral inspira- 
tion without "arrière pensees" of any sort. 

The author is reminded in this connection of the signiflcant 
words of one of our greatest living modern composers, Ernest 
Bloch, who said that he consicìers those of his own works which are 
most essentially Jewish to be the best. Bloch is far from admitting 
that to be Jewish one must make use of Jewish folk-themes. He 
merely points out that each man is the product, the sum total 'of all 
his ancestry. 

Who will deny that the deepest fount of inspiration lies in inher- 
ited racial characteristics and not in these ephemeral ones acquired, 
perhaps, in the course of one or two generations? Such men as 
Mahler and Saint-Saens, two composers of the greatest natural 
gifts, practically squandered their natural inheritance by trying to 
express themselves in idioms long outworn by their Aryan brethren. 
It is perhaps for this very reason that of all the works that Saint- 
Saens has ever written (and he has been one of the most prolific 
composers of our time; a man who delighted above all in the fluency 
of his pen), only this one biblical work, the one in which he ap- 
peared as most unmistakably Hebrew, is bound to endure, whereas 



the great bulk of his work has already toppled over under the as- 
sault of the mighty group of the rising modernists. 

Music is in debt to the memory of his mother, who was of Jew- 
ish origin, and of her aunt, Mme Masson, for the wise and unre- 
mitting care which they devoted to the delicate inf ancy of the com- 
poser — and for the extreme care with which they helped, but 
avoided forcing, the flowering of his genius. 

The fragile baby, born at No. 3, rue du Jardinet, Paris, on the 
9th of October, 1835, certainly embarked upon his long life under 
a severe handicap. Saint-Saèns' father, with the scourge of con- 
sumption already well advanced in his system at the time of his 
son's birth, died a couple of months later, on December 31, just a 
year after his marriage. 

His genius showed itself early in the boy's life. At the age of 
three, he was already showing that there was one thing for which 
he was designed by his Creator above everything else. His talents 
were nurtured carefully, private tutors were engaged, and when the 
boy was old enough he entered the Conservatoire, where he studied 
piàno under Stamitz, theory with Maleden, organ with Benoist, and 
composition with Halevy and Heber. For a time he was also a 
private pupil of the great Gounod. 

When he was but seventeen years old, he was named organist 
at the Church of St. Marie, and in 1858 was appointed to a similar 
post at the Madeleine, in succession to Lefebure Wely. From 1858 
on, Saint-Saèns was pianist, organist, and touring conductor. At 
the age of sixteen, he composed a symphony. 

There probably never existed another composer who was 
more prolific than Saint-Saèns. A perfect master of his craft, he 
has contributed to every branch of his art. An eclectic in the high- 
est sense of the word, he has attempted every style and form, dis- 
seminating his works right and left with reckless prodigality. 

The opinion of one artist concerning another is always interest- 
ing. The following words of Hans von Bulow, written in 1858, 
will convey an idea of the esteem in which the great German pianist 
held his French colleague: "There does not exist a monument of 
art of whatsoever country, school, or epoch, that Saint-Saens has 
not thoroughly studied." 

Saint-Saèns put his theory into practice with considerable suc- 
cess in the f our Symphonic poems entitled : 

"Le Rouet d'Omphale"; "Danse Macabre"; "Phaeton"; and 
"La Jeunese d'Hercule." 

Fundamentally different one f rom the other, each of these com- 
positions comes into the category of descriptive music, and ìs ìn- 
tended to illustrate a special subject. In the "Rouet d Omphale, 
the composer employed the well-known classic tale of Hercules at 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

the feet of Omphale as a pretext for illustrating the triumph of 
tenderness over strength. 

No words can express the art with which the composer has 
developed his themes, or give an idea of the delicacy of his instru- 
mentation, which, gossamer-like, seems to float in an atmosphere 
of melody. Perhaps the most characteristic of the four symphonic 
poems is the well-known "Danse Macabre." This work was sug- 
gested by a poem of Henry Cazalis, the fìrst verse of which runs 
thus : 

"Zig et zig et zag, 

la mort en cadence 
Frappant une tombe 

avec son talon 
La mort à minuit joue 

Un air de danse 
Zig et zig et zag 
sur son violon." 

The hour of midnight is heard to strike, and Death is supposed 
to perform a weird and ghastly dance, which grows wilder and 
wilder, until the cock crows; the excitement gradually subsides, 
and quiet reigns once more. 

The method in which Saint-Saèns has succeeded in musically 
depicting the above story is intensely original and masterly. 

A curious detail to be noted is the introduction, in a kind of 
burlesque manner of the "Dies Irae," transposed into the Major 
and converted into a waltz, to which the skeletons are supposed to 
dance. Strikingly original and ingenious is the effect of the solo- 
violin with its string tuned to E flat producing a diminished fìfth 
on the open strings A and E flat, which being reiterated several 
times, conveys a peculiar sensation of weirdness. 

Of his piano concertos, the second and fourth are the best 
known. It is curious to note that although principally known as a 
composer of opera, because of the great success of "Samson et 
Delila," Saint-Saèns did not make his dèbut in this fìeld until he 
had reached the age of thirty-seven, and then, only with a one-act 
opera-comique, entitled "La Princesse Jeune," which was produced 
in 1872. 

The long, active, and productive life of Saint-Saens came to an 
end while on a visit to Algiers on December 16, 1922. Thus this 
man, who was born of a consumptive father, lived to be eighty- 
seven years of age, a period filled, it is true, with toil and occasional 
failures, but never with the heart-breaking privations which seem 
to be the accustomed lot of great artists. Work after work was 
brought out from his prolifìc pen to meet with the expected success. 

The influences that created his style were complex. From his 
earliest youth he was an insatiable reader ; he had heard everything 



and coulcl clraw inspiration from a Berlioz or from a Liszt. He 
came uncler all the influences that acted so potently on the men of 
his generation, and yet was able to retain his own personality. His 
style, precise, nervous and clear-cut, is absolutely characteristic 
and also essentially French ; it recalls that of the eighteenth century 
French writers, particularly of Voltaire; nothing is superfluous, 
everything has its place. Order and clarity reign. Yet this com- 
poser, although classic by temperament and choice, is no pedant; 
he is often cold and empty of sentiment, but he is never heavy or 
pretentious. In this respect he differs entirely from Brahms, with 
whom he is often compared. 

When young, he had an extraordinary gift of freshness and 
spontaneity, as is seen in his trio in F, opus 18. As he advanced 
in age his style gained in purity but lost in f eeling ; his last com- 
positions are of a most chilling correctness. Moreover, Saint- 
Saèns was always inclined to write with excessive facility. For 
this reason, of his enormous works, there survive today only a few 
gems of the first water — his symphonic poems, the Third Sym- 
phony, and "Samson et Delila." 

For the greater part of his life Saint-Saèns showed a most 
subtle and intelligent appreciation of the compositions of others, 
never hesitating to throw down the gauntlet in defense of Liszt, 
Berlioz and Wagner. Toward the end of his life, however, he 
allowed himself to be dominated by his patriotic sentiments. 
Debussy fought against the influence of Wagner because he consid- 
ered it detrimental to French art, but Saint-Saèns attacked Wag- 
ner merely because he was a German. The violent polemics which 
he directed against Wagner did him much more harm in the eyes 
of the general public than did the bitterness with which he attacked 
young artists suspected of modern tendencies in music. These 
f oibles, excusable if only on account of his age, must not be allowed 
to blind one to the f act that here was a great man who in his youth 
possessed a lucicl and enthusiastic intelligence, a musician who, hke 
his master Liszt, was always ready to sacrifice himself for fellow- 
musicians whom he admired. , 

It would be impossible to give in these brief pages a review ot 
the numerous works that Saint-Saèns poured forth in a contmuous 

We have already spoken of some of his most ìmportant works. 
These included also his 'cello concertos and his violin concertos, 
which remain unrivaled in the repertoire of those instruments for 
the brilliance and elegance of their conception and construction. 
He has written chamber works, songs, choruses, church music, ora- 
torios "De Noel," opus 12 ; "Le Deluge," opus 45 ; "Psalm 150, etc. 

In spite of the popularity of many of his compositions, "Samson 
et Delila" stands to this day as the real monument to this great 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

man and musician, a monument that will undoubtedly survive most 
of his other work, because in the author's opinion, it was in this 
great work that both the musician and the Jew realized themselves 
most poignantly. 

Saint-Saèns died in Algiers, December 16, 1922. 


Among the young Russian-Jewish composers, perhaps the most 
widely known is Lazare Saminsky, not alone because of his many 
musical compositions, but because of the universality of his culture 
and the breadth of his development. 
Saminsky is one of the ablest critics in 
the realm of special music. There is per- 
haps no other man, except Julius Engel, 
who has a deeper insight into Jewish 
music than he. Saminsky is a welcome 
contributor to practically every musical 
magazine of note, in the United States, 
Europe, and Asia. Of an age with most 
of the outstanding modern musicians, 
Saminsky, due to his wide travels, inti- 
mate with most of them, and his charac- 
ter sketches as well as criticisms have a 
vividness and sparkle that no second- 
hand knowledge can supply. 
Saminsky has contributed to Musical America, Musical Courier 
Musical Quarterly, Chesterian, and Musical Standard of London, 
La Revue Musical, La Monde, Joumal of the League of Compos- 
ers; and the Russian magazines, Sovremyenik and Musika of 

Lazare Saminsky was born in Valle Gozulove, near Odessa 
on December 27, 1883. He was graduated from the St. Petersburg 
University, specializing in mathematics, in 1906, when he entered 
Rimsky-Korsakoff's composition classes at the Conservatory. Later 
he continued his studies under Liadow and Tcherephine. In 1910 
Saminsky conducted an overture of his own at the Petrograd Con- 
servatory, and the same year also conducted HandeFs oratorio 
"Jeptha," and Glinka's "Russian and Ludmilla." Later, at Moscow, 
he directed his own symphony "Vigilas" at one of Koussevit- 
zky s concerts. In February, 1917, he conducted his "Symphonie 
des Grandes Rivières" at one of Siloti's concerts at the Imperial 
Opera House in St. Petersburg. 

During the following year he became director of the People's 



Conservatory of Music in Tiflis, conducted historical concerts there, 
and traveled in the Caucasus, Syria, Turkey, Palestine and Egypt, 
doing research work in oriental music. In 1920 he gave a concert 
of his own works in London, conducted a ballet season at the Duke 
of York's Theatre, and gave lectures on Russian, Hebrew and ori- 
ental music in London and Oxf ord. Saminsky came to America at 
the end of 1920, and in December of that year he conducted his 
"Vigilae" with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. His "Four 
Sacred Songs" for chorus and orchestra were performed at a con- 
cert of the Society of the Friends of Music in New York, February 
5, 1922, under the composer's direction; and on March 3, the 
Boston Symphony Orchestra performed two excerpts from an early 
version of the music of his ballet, "The Lament of Rachel." He 
gave a concert of his works in Paris in the Summer of 1924. 

In addition to the works mentioned above, Saminsky has com- 
posed an opera, "Julian the Apostate" ; two symphonies, an opera- 
ballet, "The Vision of Ariel"; music for Yevreynov's play, "The 
Merry Death" (given at the Duke of York's Theatre in London m 
1920) ; besides this, choruses, violin and piano music. 

Saminsky has also written several scientific works, mainly 
on the philosophy of mathematics, some of them published. 

On March 18, 1923, the Philharmonic Society of New York, 
under the composer's direction, performed his "Symphony of the 
Summits," being the second part of a symphonic trilogy, the two 
others of which are "Symphonie des Grandes Rivières" and 
"Symphonie des Mers." It was performed by the Concertgebouw 
Orchestra in Amsterdam, under Mengelberg, on November 16, 1922, 
for the fìrst time anywhere. This music of river, mountain and 
seas is said by the composer to embody a unified poetic conception. 
The music is neither descriptive nor illustrative, but an expression 
of moods and of emotional responses to a pantheistic view of 
nature. . „ s fJ _ . . 

The first symphony ("Of the Great Rivers"), writes Saminsky, 
"was composed in October-December, 1914, in Tifiis, capital of 
Transcaucasia where I then lived high up on the hills near the city 
with the wonderful panorama of the snow chain of Caucasian 
mountains spread out before me— especially gorgeous at sunset." 

Saminsky's "Symphonie des Mers" was given its premiere in 
Paris in June, 1925, by the Colonne Orchestra. In February, 1925, 
the League of Composers in New York, of which Sammsky ìs one 
of the directors, presented his one-act opera "Gagliarda of a Merry 
Plague." Saminsky himself conducted an ensemble of seventeen 
instruments, a chorus, which both sang and spoke, and two soloists 
— a baritone and soprano. 

But Saminsky has principally devoted himself to the study ol 
Jewish folk-music, and was one of the first members of the Jewish 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Folk Music Society and for many years President of the Art Com- 
mittee, which consisted of all the Jewish composers in Russia. 
Saminsky traveled through Turkey, Pàlestine, Syria, Egypt, ancl 
France, and used this journey for studying and collecting religious 
melodies of the Yemenite Jews, the Turkish Sephardim, and of 
other ancient communities. He lectured in Jerusalem and Jaffa on 
Jewish folk-music, and since his stay in England has lectured at 
King's College, University College (under the auspices of the Mac- 
cabeans), and also at Oxforcì and Liverpool. 

Saminsky's two ballets are "The Lament of Rachel" and "The 
Vision of Ariel" (an opera-ballet) , already spoken of. The 
latter work has a narrative of his own taken from the Micldle Ages, 
against a background from the book of Esther. "The Lament of 
Rachel" was fìrst performed in its final version on June 16 and 
22, 1923, in Paris, by the Colonne Orchestra at the Salle Gaveau, 
under Saminsky's direction. 

In September, 1924, Saminsky became music director of the 
Temple Emanu-El on Fifth Avenue, New York, one of the greatest 
congregations of the world, where he often conducts special He- 
brew Music Programs, in which he includes works of such Jewish 
modernists as Ernest Bloch, Achron and others. He is also one 
of the founders and active members of the famous society for 
Hebrew Music in St. Petersburg, and was several times a member of 
the jury of the Section of American International Society for con- 
temporary music. He is also the founder of the group "Music and 
the Bible," an honorary member of the Royal Academy in Florence, 
Italy — an honor given him for his services rendered in the cause 
of modern music. 

Saminsky has conducted in practically all the great music centers 
on both hemispheres ancì has found enough time for numerous inde- 
pendent compositions, some of which we have already mentioned. 
Aside from the incidental music to Yevreynoff's play, he has also 
written as early as 1910, an opera, "The Emperor Julian," tone 
cycles — "Songs of My Youth"; three Hebrew Song Cycles; a He- 
brew Rhapsody, for violin and piano; "Rachelina," and interesting 
arrangements of an air of the Saloniki Jews, settings of Jewish 
folk songs; he is now preparing albums of the songs for the Far 
Eastern and Gregorian Jews. 

Of particular interest are his songs, full of life, movement ancl 
color, of crystalline lyric quality, at once decorative and emotional. 

Saminsky cannot be considered an exclusively Jewish national 
composer, although the influence of Jewish folk-lore begins to ap- 
pear in much of his work, including his modernistic symphonies. 
Saminsky's work and research will greatly influence his Jewish 
contemporaries. He has been reciuestecl to furnish material col- 
lectecì f rom the Gregorian Jews for use in works of specifìc Hebrew 



character. We may still expect a great cleal from this young and 
gifted composer. After Kurt Schindler's resignation as music 
director of Temple Emanuel, in 1925, Saminsky became his suc- 


IN HIS youth a carpenter and cabinet maker, Jacob Schaefer rose 
to be what some "laborites" like to consider the representative 
of the new "proletarian music" in the United States. Born in the 
picturesque Ukrainian town of Kremenetz, province of Wolhyn, on 
October 13, 1888, of poor parents, little Jacob sang in the choir of 
the "Big Synagogue" on Saturdays and the chief holidays, and on 
week days served his apprenticeship in the cabinet-maker's shop. 

In 1911 Schaefer eloped to Chicago with the daughter of a rich 
and aristocratic family. For a time he pursued his trade. Due to 
the insistence of his wife, who died shortly after their arrival in 
America, Schaefer began studying piano and composition, first 
under Epstein, then with Adolph Brune, Felix Borofsky and finally 
with Adolph Weidig of Chicago. The same year he organized and 
became conductor of the "Freiheit Gesangs Verein," a choral body 
composed entirely of shop-workers, which grew and prospered 
under his leadership and ultimately became the parent of a number 
of similar organizations in most of the principal towns in the 
United States. 

Continuing his studies, Schaefer wrote a number of songs ±or 
mixed chorus, which have since become the standard numbers on 
all "Freiheit Gesangs Verein" concerts, and exceedingly popular 
with Jewish workers throughout the land. 

Schaef er's most important works are his cantata f or strmg or- 
chestra soprano and baritone solo, and mixed chorus, "The Two 
Brothers," to the text by Perez, and his "Messiah Ben Joseph," 
originally written as an opera and later revised as an oratorio for 
full orchestra, soprano solo, full chorus and children's chorus. 
"The Two Brothers" was performed fìrst in Chicago, and later in 
Mecca Temple, New York, twice in succession, in the Winter of 
1926, under Lazar Weiner. The second work was performed dur- 
ing the same period, the composer himself conducting. 

His latest work, "The Twelve" (on the text of Alexander Bloch) , 
for tenor, baritone solo, chorus and orchestra, was produced at the 
Madison Square Garden, New York, on April 2, 1927, by the "Frei- 
heit" Gesangverein and New York Symphony Orchestra under the 
composer's baton. 

78 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


A revolutionary among revolutionaries, the most radical of all 
the twentieth century modernists, is Arnold Schònberg. Schònberg 
has been called a "musieal anarchist," using the word in its orig- 
inal meaning, "anarchos," without -a 
head. Perhaps he is a super*human 
and the world does not know it. He is an 
autodidact. His mission is to free har- 
mony from all rules. His knowledge 
must be enormous, for his scores are as 
logical as a highly wrought mosaic. 
Schònberg may be called the Max Stirner 
of music. Now let us see what the music 
of the new man is like. Certainly he is 
the hardest musical nut to crack of his 
generation, and the shell is very bitter in 
the mouth. 

It must be borne in mind when judg- 
ing his later works, that he is not by any 
means a composer incapable of writing music on traditional lines. 
Up tiìì 1909 his work showed the strong tie that bound him to Wag- 
nerian methods of expression. The time is not yet when we can 
arrive at a considered judgment of him as a composer. There can 
be no doubt as to the power of his personality or the powerful in- 
fluence of his music, his aesthetics and his teachings on contempor- 
ary art. 

Arnold Schònberg was born on September 13, 1874, in Vienna. 
He began, when quite young, to compose chamber music. At that 
time he studied the violin and 'cello. Later, when he began to study 
under his famous brother-in-law, Zemlinsky, Schònberg sprang 
suddenly into the limelight. 

At the age of nineteen he made a wonderf ul piano arrangement 
of Zemlinsky's opera "Sarema," and wrote his string quartet in D 
minor, which was performed, with some alterations, in the follow- 
ing season (1898-9) by the Fitzner Quartet. This work is at pres- 
ent believed lost. Another string sextet — "Verklàrte Nacht," opus 
4, was composed in September, 1899. His gigantic Symphonia 
Chorus, "Gurrelieder," was written in 1900. It is a ballad cycle 
for five solos and three male choruses, for four voices, mixed 
chorus for eight voices, and full orchestra. This most extensive 
composition from Schònberg's pen is a powerful echo of the "Tris- 
tan" harmony. It is, in comparison with the tormenting and self- 
judging post-Wagnerism which persisted up to the end of the last 



century, a gigantic work, but still the work of a decadent Wagner- 
ite. In spite of this, it is a work pointing to the future, a work' 
rich in invention, of which some motives are second only to the 
eternal motifs in "Tristan and Isolde." 

The "Gurrelieder" spread among the largest musical circles, 
was first to give irref utable proof of Schònberg's great ability ; but 
it is too much of the past and too little of the real Schònberg. 

The fìrst Vienna performance of this cycle was directed by 
Franz Schrecker, then conductor of the Philharmonic chorus. 

Composition was interrupted in 1900 by the necessity of scoring 
operettas for a living. In 1901 Schònberg married Matilda Zem- 
linsky, sister of the well-known Alexander Zemlinsky (who was the 
only teacher Schònberg ever had), and removed to Berlin, where he 
accepted a conductorship at the cabaret "Uberbrettl," a literary 
variety-theatre. After composing his symphonic poem, "Pelleas 
and Melisande," he returned to Vienna in 1903 and there began his 
career as teacher of theory and composition. His name was then 
known to a select circle of young musicians, aiid it was at that time 
that he formed a close friendship with Rose and Gustav Mahler, 
who were enthusiastic over his work and personality. 

Those who have believed in Arnold Schònberg from the begin- 
ning are f ew in number ; they are oppressed people who have had 
to suffer infinitely in mind and, almost without exception, mate- 
rially also. Certainly not saints, they were but martyrs for a 
serious artistic idea, yearning souls who were in danger of being 
chilled by the littleness of their own selves' and who were 
endeavoring to seek the warming sun of a greater one. It was 
owing to the disciple-like, fanatical activity of those few that 
Schònberg's early Vienna works were perf ormed at last, albeit amicl 
irritating scenes of cruelty and wide opposition, proving that no 
serious musician in the whole world dared to pass by the artistic 
apparition of Schònberg. 

These people, through a misunderstanding or something which 
was cautiously groping its way out, carried away by their enthusi- 
asm, regarded work which was still in the experimental stage as 
a complete fulfilment of their theories. The gradual development 
of the qualities which were characteristically Schònberg seemed to 
them to apply to all modern music. They are only now realizing 
that these qualities are an integral part of Schònberg and do 
not always apply to his colleagues. 

In the years 1904 and 1905 Schònberg was occupied with a 
new string quartet in D, opus 7. At this time the first perform- 
ance of "Pelleas and Melisande" was given by the Society of 
Creative Musicians in Vienna, Schònberg himself conducting. 
From 1905 till 1907 he wrote eight songs, opus 6, two ballads, 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

opus 12, his Kammersinfonie in E, opus 9, which won the Mahler 
prize in composition, and the second string quartet, with voice, 
which had its fìrst performance on December 1908 by the 
famous Rose Quartet in Vienna. What Schònberg wrote from 
that time on leaves tradition more and more behind and finally 
gives up altogether every relationship with it. The tradition and 
Schònberg creations, after the F minor Quartet, have in common 
only the physical phenomenon of tone. Traditional harmony, 
counterpoint, and form appear no longer in Schònberg's works 
after the year 1907. 

His innovations, justified in his theory of harmony, are Will 
and not Chance. Whether this Will has the power to create a 
new musical world, whether Schònberg will some time be as 
famous as Orlandus Lassus or Joseph Haydn will be decided in 
the future, which will have gained the perspective which is 
necessary for every just artistic judgment. 

The transition from the classical to the new period starts with 
his "Lieder," opus 15, written in 1907. The years 1907-10 were 
astoundingly productive, not only in music, for Schònberg inspired 
by the new movement in painting, began himself to paint. A 
collection of portraits and "Visions" dating from this period was 
exhibited in Vienna in 1910. 

And now Schònberg embarks on the exploration of the uncer- 
tain seas of atonality. The new musical style is fully expressed 
in the Three Piano Pieces, opus 11, the Five Orchestral Pieces, 
opus 16, the monodrama "Erwartung," opus 17, and a modern 
Form of solo cantata for the stage. The "Five Orchestral Pieces," 
composed in 1909 were performed for the fìrst time on September 
3, 1912, at a Queen's Hall Promenade concert in London, under the 
direction of Sir Henry Wood. In January, 1914, they were again 
produced at Queen's Hall, this time under the composer's direction. 
The program notes for this performance stated that the' "Five 
Pieces" seek to express "all that dwells in us subconsciously like a 
dream; which is a great fluctuant power, and is built upon none 
of the lines that are familiar to us; which has rhythm, as the 
blood has its pulsating rhythm, as all life in us has its rhythm; 
which has a tonality, but only as the sea or the storm has its 
tonality ; which has harmonies, though we cannot grasp or analyze 
them, nor can we trace its themes . . . . All its technical craft is 
submerged, made one and indivisible with the content of the 

Schònberg, without doubt, knows his Freud thoroughly, and like 
many others was profoundly impressed by the revolutionary 
psychological theories of this countryman of his. Thus psychoan- 
alysis brought forth its inevitable fruit in the realm of music as 
it did in drama and fiction. 



The score of the "Five Orchestral Pieces" calls for two piccolos, 
three oboes, English horn, four -clarinets, bass clarinet, contra- 
bass clarinet, three bassoons, contra-bassoon, six horns, three 
trumpets, four trombones, tuba, kettle clrum, bass drum, cymbals, 
triangle, gong, xylophone, harp, celesta, ancl strings. As might have 
been expected, this work was jeered and hissed, and only a tew 
chosen critics assumed a more or less tolerant attitude towards 
the work. The well-known English critic, Ernest Newman, was 
of the opinion that Schònberg's music was "not that of a genms, 
but of a brain that has lost every vestige of the musical faculty 
it once had except the power to put notes together, without the 
smallest concern for whether they mean anything or not." 

On November 29, 1925, this anarchistic piece was performed 
by the New York Symphony under Walter Damrosch in Mecca 
Temple New York, where it met the same fate as m London. 

In the Autumn of 1911 Schònberg again moved to Berhn, 
where he lectured on composition and began his "Pierrot Lunaire," 
opus 21, a cycle of 21 tiny poems recited in music, scored foi 
declamation with string orchestra, flute and clarinet This work, 
which was fìrst performed by Albertini Zehme m Berhn m the 
autumn of 1912, made Schònberg famous. It is the most con- 
spicuous of the late German specimens of modernism, which was 
profounclly admired in the country of its creation, and unmerci- 
fully attacked elsewhere. 

On the occasion of the London performance, the London 
Times said that "Schònberg's world is described as one of name- 
less Lrrors and terrible imaginings, of perverae and poisonous 
beauty and bitter-sweet fragrance, of searmg and withering 
mockery, and malicious selfìsh humour which goes beyond that ot 

hlS During the season of 1912-13, Schònberg undertook a tour 
with a "Pierrot Lunaire" party, and conducted his own works m 
Amsterdam, St. Petersburg and Prague, everywhere evoking 
™e opposition on one hand and great enthusiasm on the othei^ 
"Pierrot Lunaire," said one periodical, "is a nddle not to be 
solved in a day, a year, or a decade. There is no need at this 
writing to go again into the details of this strangely morbid mood 
painting-this quivering, but heartless dalliance with the phan- 
tasms of a lunambulist; a thing sickly, greenly palhd sometìmes 
partaking of vertigo; at other moments suggestmg the patholog- 
cal rather than the beautiful, and hovering close to madness; a 
work fascinating in a hypersensitive way, and yet as monotonous 
Z L , driroing of water-of which it resembles. This uncanny 
mas ery of U fs not to be denied, yet it is a mastery that would 
Teem to lead music to an impasse, to put Schonberg and his 

82 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

followers in a cul-de-sac rather than to open any new dominions 
for the tonal art." 

It was in the year 1913 that Schònberg fìnished a dramatic 
work, for which he wrote his own book, "Die Gliickliche Hand." 
This work was not performed until twelve years later, on October 
14, 1925 in Vienna. Dr. Stiedry, the present energetic director 
of the Volksoper, undertook the difficult task of producing "The 
Fortunate Hand," after the fìnancial difficulties in the way had 
been overcome by the efforts of Dr. Bach, a distinguished writer 
on music and a close friend of Schònberg's. This opera, which 
had been considered impossible to perform, necessitated innum- 
erable rehearsals, but in the course of the Vienna Music Festival, 
Dr. Stiedry spared no pains in preparing it. 

The text of this work, which was also written by the composer 
must be regarded as symbolic. "The Fortunate Hand" is owned 
by the "Man," as he is called on the program, who, however 
does not know how to use it. When the curtain rises the "Man" 
ìs seen lying with his face to the ground, a fabulous animal seated 
on his back and holding him in its claws. A'dark velvet curtain 
shuts c-ff the background, and in this there are twelve loopholes 
through which as many faces, bathed in a greenish light, look 
forth and chant words of commiseration for the "Man," acting 
the part of the chorus in the ancient Greek tragedy. When the 
"Man" rises he is seen to be clad in rags. Schònberg's stage 
directions are so minute— indeed, they occupy the greater part 
of the libretto— that he prescribes a hole in the "Man's" 
stockings. The "Man" is an idealist who clings to a dream which 
cannot be fulfìlled and who ever and again yields to temptation. 

The second picture shows us the "Man" as the "Woman" 
appears in him and holding out a goblet of which he drinks 
greedily. He is fìlled with love for her, but now the "Dandy" 
appears and draws the woman away with him. After a few 
mmutes she returns and kneels down before him while the "Man" 
rises from the ground and stands grandly erect. In the third 
picture we see a rocky landscape and blacksmiths at work. The 
"Man" takes up a hammer and cleaves the anvil with a mighty 
blow. This probabiy symbolizes the idea that through happy love 
the "Man" has gained mighty strength. One cannot help being 
reminded of Siegfried. In the fourth picture the "Man" and the 
"Woman" are seen together. She hurls a rock at him, which 
resembles the fabled animal of the fìrst picture. This again drives 
ìts claws into the "Man" who is lying prostrate on the ground 
once more, while the greenish faces in the loopholes of the curtain 
chant the words : "Hadst thou to endure ever again what so of ten 
has been thy sad fate? Canst thou not renounce earthly lust and 



pleasures? Seekest then again to grasp that which eludes thee 
ever? But what is ever in thee and around thee is wherever thou 
art. Dost not see and feel, seest and feelest only the smart of thy 
body, and dost torture thyself in vain?" 

Of course, this is all symbolic of woman drawing down man, 
or perhaps contrast between dream and reality, between prosaic 
thinking ancl genius. The music speaks more clearly than the 
poem, and there is little new to be noticed in the now often 
preached asceticism. 

Small motifs spring up and disappear. Schonberg again proves 
himself the master of tone-painting that he is. This singing is 
declamatory in the extreme, and often new meaning and depth of 
feeling are lent to simple words. The "Man" was interpreted by 
Herr Jerger with his wonted skill in character portrayal. The 
"Woman" ancl the "Dandy" are mute characters. The scenic 
mounting was in the hands of a member of the Staatsoper, Stage 
Manager Turnauer. The work had a divided reception. Many of 
the audience maintained an attitude of reserve, but there was 
plenty of applause and the poet-composer had finally to appear to 
bow his thanks. # }> 

In 1915 Schònberg began a Grand Oratorio, "Jakobslieder. 
In 1918 he founded the Society for private musical performances, 
known as the "Schònberg verein" in Vienna. Afterwards he 
lectured on composition in Amsterdam (1920-21) and then, 
returning to Modling, near Vienna, he began again to teach, to 
compose ancl to take pupils in composition. It must be mentioned 
here that as early as 1903 Schònberg was teaching at the Stern 
Conservatory, and ten years later he became professor at the 
Konigliche Akademie fiir Musik. In 1922 he published a new 
and revised edition of his Manual of Harmony. In 1923 he 
composed a cycle of piano pieces, a quintet and a septet for vanous 
instruments. These works seem to be the beginning of a new 
phase of his evolution. 

Whatever Schònberg's aims may be, one thmg he cannot be 
accused of, and that is ignorance of his art. Nothing is more 
difficult than to classify the unfinished work of one who ìs still 
vigorously working. . 

Lazare Saminsky, composer and authority on the subject ot 
Jews in music, says of Schònberg: t 

"Arnold Schònberg, with all his radicalism, is a typical repre- 
sentative of Western, that is, Continental Jewry, hystencal anc 
neurotic, assimilating and accentuating ideas and feelings adapted 
from its neighbors. Schònberg plays in music the very Hebrew 
role which was played by Mendelssohn, Meyerbeer and Rubinstein, 
and I am sorry to say that' this role does not at all consist m 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

bringing an original note into European music. It tends only 
toward accentuating, sharpening or giving an overtaxed expres- 
sion to the tenclencies of the composer's contemporaries. The set 
and stubborn classicism of Mendelssohn is as much a product of a 
typically Hebrew over-emphasis of the point of artistic creed as 
the biting extremities outbursts and experiments of a Schònberg." 

On March 13, 1926, the League of Composers in New York 
gave a performance of Schònberg's quintet for wind instruments 
at Town Hall, the opinions on which were again divided as in the 
case of his other works. 

Arnold Schònberg's life has been up to this hour a life of great 
artistic surprises to himself and to those whose belief in him is 
firm. It has been a life of puzzles to those who look at his music, 
his poetry and his paintings from a distance. It is also a life of 
problems, partly solved, partly unsolved, a life of questions asked 
with an answer now and then, although some may never find 
an answer. 

It is also the life of an uncommonly strong fighting spirit who, 
convinced of the power of his mission, is counting defeats among 
the necessary preparations for a final victory. 


Although not a relative of the famous Johann or Richard, 
Oscar Strauss nevertheless has won a high place in lighter music, 
and is now one of the most widely known of operetta composers. 
He is radically diff erent from Lehar and Fall ; he is rather to be 
considered a successor to Jacques Offenbach, for like him, he 
makes light of the classical music-tragedies in an inimitable 
satirical way. 

Like some of his colleagues in the operetta fìeld, Oscar 
Strauss began as composer of serious music, and to this period 
belong some of his best works, including Overture to Grill- 
parzer's "Der Traum eines Leben," for orchestra; "Serenade," 
f or string orchestra, violin sonata in A minor, opus 33 ; the opera 
"Colombine," performed in Berlin in 1904; "Die Lustige Niebel- 
ungen," a parody performed in Berlin in 1905; "Hugdietrichs 
Brautfahrt," performed in Vienna in 1906; "Ein Waltzertraum," 
(undoubtedly his best work) performed in 1907; "Der Tapfere 
Soldat," (his famous "Chocolate Solclier") first performed in 
Vienna in 1908; "Rund um die Liebe," performed in 1914. But 
Oscar Strauss soon turned to lighter, compositions and here found 
a wide field for his talents. 



Oscar Strauss was born in Vienna on April 6, 1870, ancl 
studied under Gradener and Max Bruch. During 1895-1900 he 
was conductor in many provincial theatres. In 1900 he became 
chief conductor in the cabaret "Uberbrettl," founded by E. von 
Wolzogen, whose members included the famous poets, Franz 
Wedekind and O. J. Bierbaum, for whose stage pieces Strauss 
wrote many musical numbers. 

In his later period Strauss began to make free use of modern 
dance rhythms ("Shimmy" and fox-trot), and there he has 
achieved artistic and pleasing results. 

Aside from the compositions listed above, the following comic 
operas belong to his "serious" period: "Der Schwarze Man" 
performed in 1903; "Die Galante Markgrafin," performed in 
1919 And to his more modern group belong "Liebeszauber," 
performed in Berlin in 1916; "The Last Waltz," performed in 
Vienna in 1920; "Nixchen," performed in Berlin in 1921, ancl 
many others. He has also written the ballet "Die Prinzessin von 

Oscar Strauss's operettas sparkle with life and humor, and 
his melodic inventions are of the "catchiest" and most lyrical, 
pleasing alike to the connoisseur and layman. Few operettas of 
modern times have won such universal popularity as the incom- 
parable "Chocolate Soldier" and "A Waltz Dream." 


This well-known composer and theoretician, among whose pupils 
was the author of this book, was born on July 7, 1883, in Russia. 
In spite of the fact that he showed precocious talent in music, his 
parents chose for him the career of a scientist. On being graduated 
from the Petrograd Gymnasium in 1901, Steinberg entered the 
University of the same city where he completed the course in 

But his natural inclination and love for music compelled him 
to take up its study seriously. He entered the Petrograd Con- 
servatory, studying under Rimsky-Korsakoff and Glazounov. He 
was graduated from this institution in 1908. Immediately after- 
wards, he was offered the post of Professor at his alma mater, an 
honor very rarely bestowed on any one, and this youth (then not 
quite twenty-five years old) suddenly found himself in a profes- 
sor's chair. Not only did fortune smile on the musician, but on 
the man as well, for he won the hand of the daughter of his 
teacher, Korsakoff . On the occasion of his marriage, Igor Stravin- 

86 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

sky, his f ellow-pupil, wrote and dedicated to the couple the 
brilliant and famous symphonic work, "Fireworks." 

Steinberg's early work as composer shows the influence of 
Glazounov, even more strongly than that of KorsakofT, and a 
great technical ability, combined with a not unoriginal but essen- 
tially classical temperament. His was also the honor of òditing 
the posthumous works of his father-in-law. He also completed 
Korsakoff's famous Handbook on Orchcstration. 

Steinberg has utilized practically all forms in his writings. He 
has^written songs, chamber music, symphonies, etc. 

This interesting personality is still teaching at the same 
conservatory where he began. 


Solomon Sulzer, composer and chief cantor of the Jewish con- 
gregation of Vienna, as well as teacher at the conservatory there, 
is considered the most famous cantor of the nineteenth century. 

He was born on March 30, 1804 in 
Voralberg. This great reformer of 
synagogue music is also significant as 
a composer. Thanks to the two volumes 
of religious chants, Shir Zion, pub- 
lished by him in 1845-66 and accepted 
by all synagogues, he won fame as a 
great innovator of excellent taste and 

Sulzer was also the possessor of a 
soft and soulful voice, which exercised 
an unspeakable charm over his listen- 
ers. He had a vivid creative imagina- 
tion, which recalls the Hebrew prophets, 
and like them bore the pathos and tradi- 
tions of his people on the wings of his mournful melodies and 
expressive voice. He saw in flaming images the things he sang. 
His far-reaching imagination carried him to the days of'his 
people's great past. The general feeling of love and respect for 
the genius as well as for the man was made evident when he 
resigned his post as chief-cantor of the Vienna Great Synagogue, 
which had echoed the strains of his soul and voice for fìfty-six 

In 1845 he received an invitation from the Vienna Music 
Society to accept the honorary post of Professor of Singing at 



the conservatory. He kept it until 1848. During one of the 
evenings organized in his honor by his friends and followers, 
Madame Gabglion, a court actress, read Mosenthal's Prologue, 
and the famous violinist Helmesberger, at that time director of 
the conservatory, played music to the same Prologue, especially 
written for the occasion by Karl Goldmark. 

Franz Liszt, after hearing Sulzer sing, spoke of him m his 
article, "The Gypsies and their Music in Hungary" (Budapest, 
1861) : "Only once had we the opportunity to conceive wnat 
Jewish art could have been if all the intensity of the living 
feeling in the Jew could be expressèd in forms innate of their 
own spirit ; we met in Vienna Cantor Sulzer. His singing of the 
psalms, like the spirit of fire, soars over us to the all-high to 
serve as steps to His feet. The heavenly quality of his voice 
transports us to heaven . . . ." 

During the latter years of his life, the famous author ot 
"Shir Zion" devoted his time to the re-editing of his works. In 
this labor he was much assisted by his son, Professor Joseph 
Sulzer, an outstanding 'cellist and pedagogue. His aid was the 
more necessary as the old composer's sight began to fail him. 
Unfortunately, he did not live to see the new edition of his 
compositions, for he died in Vienna on January 18, 1890. Two 
years after his death, his son published the posthumous works 
of his father, augmented by his own works. 


Tilis HUNGARIAN composer won international repute when his 
"Serenade" for small orchestra, written when the composer was 
only twenty-one years old, was awarded the Budapest Liptovarosi 
Kaszino prize. His second string quartet received the Coohdge 
prize in 1922. 

Born in Budapest on April 16, 1875, Leo Wemer studied 
composition under Hans Kessler at the Royal High School for 
Music in his natal town. In 1907 he accepted the post of teacher 
in harmony and composition at that institution. 

Aside from the two prize works mentioned, this composer has 
written many other works of great significance, a partial list of 
which follows: „ , „ 

First string quartet, opus 4; "Faschmg, — an overture ±oi 
small orchestra, opus 5; "Prelude, Nocturen and Scherzo tor 
piano, opus 7; first sonata for piano and violin, opus 9; second 
sonata for piano and violin, opus 11. 

Weiner is very active both as teacher and composer and much 
may be expected of him. 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Alexander Tansman is one of the most gifted among the 
young generation in France. For though he is of Polish origin 
(which is often in evidence), this composer belongs to the 
modern French, having developed under 
the joint influence of Stravinsky, Ravel, 
and the masters of the eighteenth and 
nineteenth century. 

He was born in Lodz, Poland, on June 
12, 1897. He fìrst studied music in his 
native town with Gawronski, Podka- 
miner, Sandor Vas, and Karl Lutchg. He 
began to compose when he was nine 
years old. At Warsjiw he continued his 
musical studies, while he took a course 
in law at the university. His first com- 
position to be played in public was 
"Symphonic Serenade" for strings, 
written at the age of fìfteen. Musicians 
were surprised by the original harmonic scheme, which gradually 
developed into what Roland-Manuel has called "Les accords Tans- 
man." Before Tansman was twenty-two he had composed several 
symphonic works, chamber music and piano pieces. In 1919 he was 
awarded not only the Grand Prix de Pologne for musical composi- 
tion, but also the second and the third prizes (entries were sub- 
mitted anonymously). All these years the contemporary movement 
in other countries was wholly unknown to him. His "Modernisme" 
was his own. Knowing that the Polish public was not prepared 
for music of modern tendencies, he made Paris his dwelling 
place in 1920, and at once entered actively into the musical life 
of that city, publishing his compositions. He also traveled outside 
France with the same purpose. On March 18, 1924, a dispatch 
from Warsaw announced his marriage at Paris to Anna Eleonora 
Bronciner, the Roumanian dancer. 

Tansman has progressed from his "systematic bitonality" to a 
chromaticism "quasi-atonal through the superposition of several 
well-defìned tonalities." For this young musician is credited with 
being an innovator — even in the days of Stravinsky — in the field 
of harmony and rhythm. Of the Slavic world, this musician has 
beyond doubt preserved a taste for the fairy-like, a very lively 
sense of rhythm, a need for heavy harmonic coloring. One can 
easily observe the influence Scriabine exercised over him. 



In the Summer of 1924, Tansman composed his new famous 
"Sinf onietta," which was perf ormed for the fìrst time at a concert 
of the Sociètè de Musique de Chambre in Paris on March 23, 1925. 
Beginning with the "Sinfonietta," reviewers cease mentioning 
any traits that may be charged to immaturity. "Up to the 'Sin- 
fonietta/ Tansman's style was one of juxtaposed phrases; further, 
he frequently went astray in the details of his work. But in the 
'Sinfonietta' as also in the 'Quartet,' there is a certain terseness 
of thought, a flight of the imagination which while devel- 
oping in a continuous line, shows diversity, and blossoms into 
new richness. It seems that Tansman will always retain an 
attachment for short and compact forms. But the first two parts 
of the 'Sinfonietta' defìnitely show that with Tansman this 
brevity is often accompanied by a richness of thought which 
loses nothing because of its conciseness." 

The "Sinfonietta" is scored for fìve strings, wooclwinds, 
piano, trumpet, two trombones, kettle-drums, and percussion. lt 
comprises an allegro, a mazurka, a nocturne, and a finale made up 
of a fugure and a toccata. In the allegro molto the flute and oboe 
sìng their graceful little phrase in thirds to the metronomic 
pizzicato of a viola and ostinato of a clarinet. Bell-figures of 
horn and trumpet are interrupted by tutti. In the Mazurka 
woodwinds develop supple and expressive arabesques. The Noc- 
turne flows on in a sombre atmosphere produced by the tremolo 
of low strings. The poetic note of a horn is answered by an oboe. 
After a short development there is a return to the beginning. A 
cymbal sounds forth the mystery of night ... In the fugure 
and tocatta, the violincello exposes a theme based on intervals of 
the fourth; strings, woodwinds, brass join in the general poly- 
phony, written freely but with great concentration. 

Although but thirty, Tansman has already proved himself a 
prolific composer. He has chosen the symphony orchestra as the 
medium for his expression, and has already written a number of 
important works, a list of which f ollows : "Elans" ; "Promethèe" ; 
"Le Jardin du Paradis" ; "Intermezzo Sinfonic" (1923, Pans), 
which constitutes an effort toward new forms of musical con- 
struction; "Scherzo Symphonique," (performed by Koussevitzky 
in Paris, 1923) ; "Lègende" (also performed by Koussevitzky ìn 
Paris in 1924) ; "Danse de la Sorcière" (performed on November 
2 1925, in New York under Mengelberg). 

His latest work, at the time of this writing, is a "Sonatma ' 
for flute and piano, which introduces a fox-trot as one of the 
movements and is full of fantasy. 

He is making his visit to the United States durmg the 1927-28 
season, at the invitation of Serge Koussevitzky, and will conduct 

90 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

orchestral performances of his works, among them the Symphony 
in A minor, "Danse de la Sorcière," and Sinfonietta for small or- 
chestra. He will be piano soloist in performances of his chamber 
music works. 

During the last season, Tansman's ballet, 'The Tragedy of 
the 'Cello" was produced several times. In Chicago it was per- 
formed by Adolph Bolm's Allied Arts, and in New York by the 
League of Composers, conducted by Tullio Serafìn, of the Metro- 
politan Opera Company. 

Much of great importance in the fìeld of contemporary music 
can be expected from this young and giftecl musician. 


The music of Castelnuovo-Tedesco is noted for a breadth of human 
feeling which, brought to bear on us, strives and is able to awaken 
those generous emotions often dormant in man, and only awaiting 
a fraternal word for their awakening. 

No outside influence has been exerted on Castelnuovo-Tedesco, 
if we except that of Pizzetti, his master, who was for him all that 
an educator should be. Divining the ardent individuality of his 
pupil, Pizzetti's sole aim was to 'quicken and stabilize it through 
the agency of his own overflowing humanism. 

Castelnuovo-Tedesco was born in Florence, April 3, 1895. He 
studied piano at the Cherubini Royal Institute of Music in Flor- 
ence under Del Valle, and composition under T. Pizzetti. One of 
the young Italian school, he is noted for his interesting work. One 
of the compositions that fìlls us with a bounteous sense of tranquil 
emotion in the presence of nature, is his "II Raggio Verde," tech- 
nically one of his most fìnished and in its inspiration one of his 
freest creations. 

Castelnuovo-Tedesco makes notable approaches to a purity of 
form in certain pages of Pizzetti. His merit lies also in his ability 
to discover the musical language most apt to express the inner 

meaning of the Pranciscan parable, in his three "Fioretti" a 

language that should be at once medieval and modern. It is sim- 
plicity itself, particularly from the harmonic viewpoint, being pe- 
culiarly limpid and transparent, and the declamation varied and 

To piano literature, he has dedicated three rhapsodies (one 
Viennese, one Neapolitan, and one Hebrew) ; also "Le Stagioni," a 
short piano suite. He has written, among other things : "Signor- 
ine" (1918) ; "Ritmi" (1920) ; "Capitano Fracassa" (1920) ; 
"Cinque Canti" (1923). 



Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco has been actively composing ot' 
late. His work includes a dithyramb in one act, for soli, chorus, 
mimes, and orchestra; "Bacco in Toscana" ; a song cycle, "Otto 
Scherzi per Musica" ; four sonnets f or voice and piano ; a new rhap- 
sody f or piano on Hebrew themes, "Le Danze del Re David" ; and 
three chorales for piano, also based on Hebrew melodies. 


Egon Wellesz, the Hungarian composer, is considered one of the 
most gifted among the young modern composers. He was born in 
Vienna on October 21, 1885. He started to take lessons in theory 
while he studied at High School. Graduating from the school he 
went to the University and also studied counterpoint and compo- 
sition with Arnold Schònberg. 

The first composition he wrote was "Wie ein Bild," which Emmy 
Heim sang in Budapest. Later he wrote some beautiful songs and 
piano pieces, of which "Der Abend," opus 4 (1909-10), Four Im- 
pressions for Piano, was produced by Mme. de Tigranoff in 1912, 
in Paris, as well as his "Drei Klavierstucke," opus 9, "Eklogen," 
opus 11, and "Epigrame," opus 17, produced by Norah Drewett in 
Berlin and Vienna, in 1912-13. 

In 1914 he wrote his fìrst String Quartet, opus 14 ; in 1916 his 
Second String Quartet and his "Idyllen" for piano; and in 1918 
his Third String Quartet. 

At the same time Jacob Wassermann wrote especially for Wel- 
lesz the text to an opera, "Princess Girnara," to which Wellesz com- 
posed music in 1918-19 ; it had its premiere in Frankf ort-on-Main 
in May, 1921. 

His other compositions are: "Persische Ballett," composed m 
1920 and produced in Donaueschingen in 1924; Fourth Quartet, 
"Achilles auf Skyros," ballet produced in 1926 in Stuttgart; the 
following operas: "Alkestis," produced under Kichard Lert in 
Mannheim on March 20, 1924; "Opferung des Gefangenen," pro- 
duced under Egan Szenkar in Kòln, on April 10, 1926 ; two violin 
sonatas ; compositions f or iarge orchestra ; suite f or violin, cham- 
ber orchestra, and songs. 

92 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Alexander Weprik, composer, was born on July 23, 1899, in Lodz, 
Poland. He fìrst took piano lessons in 1904-5, in the Warsaw Con- 
servatory. Till 1909 he was with Goussokofsky, following which 
he studied with Wendling in Leipzig. 
After the war he studied composition in 
the St. Petersburg and Moscow Con- 
servatories. In so high esteem were his 
talents held that he was invited to teach, 
despite his extreme youth, in his own 
alma mater. 

His fìrst composition was performecl 
in 1920 in Leipzig. He has written two 
sonatas for plano; "Song of the Dead," 
for viola and voice; "Kaddisch" for high 
voice; a violin suite, and Hebrew songs. 
He is now working on his third sonata 
for piano. 

W : : : : 


Kurt Weil has recently begun to attract the attention of Berlin's 
musical cognoscenti. A young man of only twenty-eight, Weil 
has already won a place as one of the prominent uitra-modern 
composers. Busoni, his teacher in piano 
and composition, prophesied for him a 
brilliant future. Weil is a follower of 
Debussy, Schònberg, Hindemith and' the 
whole school of our ultra-modernists ; 
nevertheless he shows much individual- 
ity. In spite of his youth, he has already 
created a good deal of work in the fìeld 
of opera, ballet, symphony and fairy-tale 

On April 5, 1926, his newest work, an 
opera in one act, "The Protagonist," was 
given its premiere at the Dresden Opera. 
The story, based on a play by George 
Kaiser, tells of the visit to an English 
lage of a traveling troupe of actors, headed by the Pro- 
tagonist. The period is the Renaissance. The latter's sister, 
who is his particular idol, reveals by her evasions during the 



performance of a pantomime at the command of a Duke, that she 
is having a love affair. The maddened showman, in a frenzy, 
throttles her. There is an element of "play within a play" as the 
real story is enacted against the backgrounci of a stage represen- 
tation somewhat as in "Pagliacci." The performance uncler Fritz 
Busch was a striking one. 

His other works include: "Quodlibet," entertainment music 
f or orchestra, aimed f or a child's theatre, opus 9 ; "Girls' Dance," 
opus 10; "Concert for Violins and Wood Winds," opus 12; "The 
New Orpheus," a cantata for soprano, solo violin, and orchestra, 
with text by Ivan Goll. In the winter of 1926, his opera "Royal 
Palace," created a sensation, because of its novel theme, when 
produced at the Berlin State Opera. His latest one-act opera, 
"Photography and Love," is based on a play by George Kaiser. 


Jakob Weinberg was born on July 1, 1879, in Odessa. His family 
was well known in music and literature, his father's brother, P. J. 
Weinberg, enjoying a reputation as literary critic, poet, and trans- 
lator of Heine. As a child, young Jakob 
displayed marked musical tenclencies. 
His f ather, however, had other plans, and 
wished to make a merchant of the boy, 
and insisted that he attend a school of 
commerce. At the age of seventeen, 
young Weinberg moved to Rostow to 
work as a bank-clerk. But his calling 
was soon made manif est — he had a strong 
leaning for music. After studying for 
two years under the musical pedagogue 
Pressman, Weinberg was permitted to 
enter the most advanced courses of the 
Moscow Conservatory, then under the 
direction of Safonoff. 
Here he studiecl piano with Professor Igumnoff, and composi- 
tion with Tanejew. At the same time he was appointed professor 
in the law faculty of the Moscow University. 

Weinberg remained in Moscow after concluding his studies. 
His first work was an "Elegy for 'Cello," a Tschaikowsky memorial, 
published by Jurgenson as opus one. This was followed by the 
Sonata for Violin and Piano, in F sharp minor, first played m 
Paris, 1905, atthe Rubinstein Concerts and then given on numerous 
occasions in Russia. The Piano Concerto in E flat minor, opus 
eight, was played in Moscow, Kiev, Odessa, and other cities. The 

94 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

following year, Weinberg tourecì Russi £ a as piano virtuoso and ac- 
companist. He then gave instruction in piano and the theory of 

In 1923 Weinberg left for Palestine, where he began to com- 
pose in the Judaic tradition. 

He has played a leading part in the establishment and organ- 
ìzation of the Jewish National Conservatory of Music in Jerusalem, 
and has composed Jewish music on yemenite, sepphardic, chassidic 
and Arabian themes. 

In 1926 he won first prize in a musical contest at the Philadel- 
phia Centennial Exposition, for his comic opera "Hachaluz" (the 
Pioneer), for which he also wrote the libretto. This opera is in 
three acts, the fìrst of which transpires in Poland, the second and 
third in Palestine; it paints the life of the young immigrants, fìrst 
in the golus, then their arrival and life in Palestine. The opera 
consists of many humorous and interesting episodes. The music 
•for it is written in pure Jewish folk-lore music. It is the 
fìrst purely Jewish music that ever received recognition in an inter- 
national musical contest. Prominent judges, consisting of com- 
posers and conductors, made the award. Parts of the opera— 
the chorus, dance, and a few songs, the whole under the title, "A 
Night in Palestine," may be produced next season in Philadelphia 
at a festival to be played by the Philadelphia Orchestra with a 
picked chorus of several thousand singers. 

Besides the above-mentioned works, some of his standard num- 
bers are: Concert Piece for Piano and Orchestra; Sonata in E flat 
major for Piano; Phantasy for Piano and Orchestra; Hebrew Folk 
Dance for Violin; Quartet for Piano, Violin, Viola and 'Cello; and 
many works for chorus and solo voice. 

Weinberg's name is numbered among the outstanding few who 
are making Jewish musical history in the world today, and espe- 
cially in Palestine. He has recently been invited to take charge 
of the Jewish Publication Society, in Berlin. 


Alexandek Ziiitomirsky was born in Kherson, Russia, in 1881. 
At the age of seventeen he entered the Odessa Musical School of the 
Imperial Russian Musical Society, where he studied the violin under 
Professor E. K. Mlinarski. During 1898-9 he studied at the Vienna 
Conservatory, where his teachers were Prill for the violin, Foll for 
theory, and Dehr for piano. In 1901 he undertook a special 



course in theory anct composition with Korsakoff, Liadoff ancl Gla- 
zounoff. He was graduated f rom the Conservatory in 1910 with the 
degree of "Free Artist," and receivecl the silver medal there for his 
"Dramatic Overture." Since 1914 he has been professor at the St. 
Petersburg Conservatory in the Special theory and composition 


Althougii a musician of great ability and the composer of many 
signifìcant works, Zemlinsky is principally known as teacher and 
for that Wagnerian and Brahmsian element in the early works of 
his famous pupils, Schònberg and Korn- 

Born in Vienna on October 4, 1872, 
Zemlinsky attended the Vienna Conser- 
vatory, and later became conductor at 
the Volksoper in Vienna, where he in- 
augurated a brilliant epoch. In 1908 he 
was conductor at the Vienna Hofoper 
ancl the following year in Mannheim. 
After several seasons he became chief 
conductor at the Prague Opera. 

Zemlinsky is a brother-in-law of the 
now famous Schònberg. He excels par- 
ticularly in instrumentation, the ef- 
forts in this fìelcl of his other famous 
pupil, Korngold, showing at an early age great brillance and 

Zemlinsky has written three symphonies, of which the third 
"Lyric," was first performed in Prague, on June 6, 1924; a sym- 
phonic poem, — "Die Seejungfrau" ; chamber music of excellent 
quality and six operas. 

His fìrst opera, "Zarema," which had its premiere in Munich 
in 1897 was awarded the Lentpold prize ; his second opera, "Es War 
Einmal," also had great success when it was presented in Vienna in 
1900. His "Kleider Machen Leute" was performed in 1910 ; "The 
Dwarf" (libretto by Oscar Wilde), was performed ih 1921, and "The 
Birthday of the Infanta," also to a Wilde libretto, was performed 
at Cologne. Since September of 1927, Zemlinsky has been con- 
ductor at the Berlin Staatsoper. 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Manna Zucca, one of America's foremost composers, was born in 
New York, December 25, 1891. Her extraordinary musical talent 
manifested itself very eaiiy. At four she made her fìrst public ap- 
pearance, playing standard works and 
improvisations. At eight she created a 
real sensation, playing a Beethoven Con- 
certo with the New York Symphony Or- 
chestra under Walter Damrosch. Her 
teacher in this country for piano was 
Alexander Lambert and for composition, 
Herman Spielter. Going abroad, she con- 
tinued her studies, with Godowsky and 
Busoni, taking also composition with Max 
Vogrich and voice with Raimond von zur 

Manna Zucca gave concerts in Russia, 
Germany, France, Holland and England, 
arousing great interest and enthusiasm. 
For a short time she turned her attention to the stage. While 
dining at a friend's house in London, she met Franz Lehar. She 
sang the score of "Gypsy Love" so well at sight that he asked her to 
go to Vienna and sing the leading role. George Edwards, another 
prominent manager, who was present, said, "Stay here and you will 
sing at Daly's." The following week Manna Zucca made her dèbut 
in London in the "Count of Luxemburg." After this success, she 
came to America to sing the leading role in the "Rose Maid." 
Later she appeared in "Geisha" and "The Mikado." As she 
later said, this life provided lots of fun but not enough of the seri- 
ous element. 

Returning to her career as musician, Manna Zucca played her 
own Piano Concerto with the Los Angeles Symphony Orchestra. 

Her compositions are being sung by the world's leading artists. 
Her "children's songs" of which she has made a specialty, are being 
used in a great many schools. She has found time to write upwards 
of 400 compositions. 

In 1921 Manna Zucca responded to the ardent wooing of Mr. 
Irwin M. Calless, a millionaire in Florida, where they married in 
September, the same year. Manna Zucca is still composing. Her 
works, especially her songs, are extremely popular in America. She 
has been called the "Chaminade" of America. 




With the growtii of a strong racial consciousness among the 
younger Russian-Jewish intelligentsia and Bohemians, a step has 
been taken which will undoubtedly lead to the establishment ot a 
new school. 

We feel that we cannot do better than to quote the words ot 
Leonid Sabaneyev, a non-Jewish critic of Moscow, about this new 
trend of the young Jewish composers. It may be mentioned that 
some of these composers, for example, Lazare Saminsky, Joseph 
Achron, Weiner, Jacob Schaeffer, Leo Low, and Zavel Zilberts, have 
carried this movement to the new continent, where they are now 
living, and that the famous Ernest Bloch has carried the ideals of 
this movement to a pitch, the true strength of which the reacler can 
appreciate when reading the life of this great and inspired mu- 

"The natural musicianship of the Jews exceed that oi ail na- 
tions," says Leonid Savaneyev. "The proportion of Jewish musi- 
cians is' much larger than that of any other nation. The artistic 
temperament of this people, its colossal ability in the fields of mter- 
pretation, the examples of its masters in the field of creative music 
(Meyerbeer, Rubinstein, Halevy, Mendelssohn, Bizet, etc), and the 
concerted awakening of an interest in the field of national creative 
work,— all these give us hope for the future of Jewish music. And 
we must say, in truth, that those stones already laid in the erection 
of a Jewish national music permit us to say that a part of the hopes 
has already been realized. The Jews have already enriched the 
world's musical literature by a f resh and decidedly original draught 
of inspiration. The people who created the great religions of the 
world, this nation of God-bearers, a revolutionary people tragically 
scattered over the face of the earth, bearing for thousands of years 
the world's sorrows, a peopie that withstood humiliation, insult, 
exile, in which it has tempered its national spirit — such a people 
cannot but possess the peculiar psychology of expressing its soul in 
tones. , 

"The Jewish nation was always a smgmg nation; ever did ìt 
express in tones the sorrows that shook it— its wrath and 
its temptations. . . . And now, when this nation has already crys- 
talized an intellectual stratum— it not only can, but vvust say the 
WORD." . , 

A tremendous impetus to the formation and growth of this 
movement was the "ethnological expedition" financed by Baron 
Horazio Gunzberg. This expedition was organized for the purpose 
of collecting Jewish folk-lore in the remote Russian villages, and in 
out-of-the-way districts of Russia and other parts of the world. 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

The members of this expedition were the best equipped in Russia, 
culturally, musically and spiritually. We fìnd on its staff such names 
as Julius Engel, Z. Kisselhoff, Leo Wintz, Ephraim, Schklar, Lazar 
Saminsky. At the same time a similar expedition was carried on in 
Palestine by Zwi Idelson. 

The result of these activities was the establishment in St. Peters- 
burg of the famous "Society for Jewish Folk Music" founded in 
that city in 1908. Five years later, a branch was also opened in 
Moscow, and others were established in Kiev, Kharkov, etc. 

The next step was the natural moulding of the material col- 
lected by the members of the expeditions, comprising such untold 
treasures of fresh and highly original Jewish themes. The concern 
of the musicians that contributed to the Society was to preserve in 
their work the maximum of "Jewishness" as well as the freshness 
of the material collected, and to arrange and develop the themes ac- 
cording to the latest harmonic devices. 

Although such men as Rubinstein, Halevy and others of the 
past utilized Jewish themes in their creative efforts there is never- 
theless a vast difference between what they accomplished and 
what the members of the Jewish Society have done. It must be 
borne in mind that the great Jewish composers of the eighteenth 
and nineteenth centuries were limited by the culture and traditions 
of the land in which they were born or which they later adopted. 
For example, Mendelssohn was, or tried to be, more German than 
the Germans themselves, Rubinstein more Russian than the Slavs, 
Meyerbeer more French than the Frenchmen. The men who cham- 
pion the racial consciousness of the Jewish composers admit no 
doubt as to the racial origin of their creation. No longer are we 
aware of frantic efforts to conceal themselves behind a pseudo- 
nationalism. The Jewish composer of this movement comes 
frankly to the fore. It has taken the Jewish composer many years 
to find out that the outworn idioms of his" neighbors would hardly 
suffìce for the expression of his individual life and aspirations. 
This new trend which has arisen on the rim of the twentieth cen- 
tury, has already gained substantial results, and is intimately con- 
nected, in Russia, with such names as Joseph Achron, Alexander 
Krein, Michael Gniessin, M. Millner, Lazare Saminsky, Solomon 
Rosowski, A. Veprick, Gregory Krein, L. Streicher, I. Eisberg, 
Samuel Feinberg, Leo Wintz, 0. Potoker, A. M. Zhitomirski, Rum- 
shinski, Boris Levenson, D. Schorr, P. Lvoff, Herman Swett, M. 
Levin, Abilley, L. Zeitlin, Tomars, Chessin, Bichter, Weisberg," 
Leo Low, Rivessman, G. Weinberg, A. Dzimitrowsky, S. Golubi 
J. Rosenblat, L. Weiner, Rumschinsky, Posner, Okun, M. Schalith! 
G. Kopit, E. Kaplan, Rhea Silberta, E. Schklar (pupil of Balakireff 
and Rimsky-Korsakoff), who wrote extraordinary songs, among 
them "Jerusholaim." 


ONE OP the pioneers of symphonic music in the United States ìs 
Moclest Altschuler, the eminent 'cellist and conductor who was 
born in Moghileff, Russia, on February 18, 1873. He studied 'cello 
under Goebelt at the Warsaw Conserva- 

tory, and under Fitzenhagen and von 
Glen at the Moscow Conservatory, where 
he was also a pupil of Arensky for har- 
mony, and of Tanieeff for composition. 
He received the Moscow Conservatory de- 
gree of Bachelor of Music in 1890. 

Being graduated from the Conserva- 
tory, he toured Europe as one of the 
"Moscow Trio," and later went to the 
United States, where he was active for 
some time as 'cellist and teacher. In 1904 
he founded the Russian Symphony Or- 
chestra, which annually gave a series of 
concerts at Carnegie Hall in New York. 

He was conductor of this body until 1919, and still contmues to 
conduct it at musical festivals in the southern states. 

The fìrst concert of the Russian Symphony Orchestra was given 
under his direction at Cooper Union Hall, on January 7, 1904. It 
was with this symphony that Mischa Elman made his American 
dèbut on December 10, 1908. Scriabin also owes his popularity m 
America to Altschuler, who fìrst introduced his works and fought 
in his behalf before unf riendly audiences. 


Felix Otto Dessoff was born in Leipzig on January 14, 183.5. He 
belonged to those German conductors who by their refinement, quick 
wit and inventiveness are as if especially cònceived by nature for 
conducting, and can divine the thought of the composer. He studied 
at the Leipzig Conservatory and began his career as conductor at 
Chamnitz, going on to Aachen, Dusseldorff, Altenburg, Magdeburg, 

and Kassel. in . . . p , , 

His extraordinary love of work, together with his gifts, brought 
him at the peak of a conductor's career at an age when most mem- 
bers of that calling are just beginning. In 1860 he was mvited to 


102 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

take the post of court conductor at Vienna. Dessoff accepted and 
remained there for fifteen years, also teaching at the Conservatory 
of the Society of Music Lovers, and conducting the Philharmonic 

His constant labors naturally prevented him from composing. 
The few pipces he did compose, some sonatas f or piano, piano quar- 
tet and quintet, songs and chamber music, prove his refined taste 
and his great mastery. 

In 1875 Dessoff was invited to take the position of court con- 
ductor in Kaiisruhe, and from 1881 till his death, which occurred 
on October 28, 1891, he was conductor of the Frankfort-am-Main 
Stadtstheater. Dessoff held fìrst place among the conductors of the 
latter half of the nineteenth century. 


An ABLE, energetic and experienced conductor is Leo Blech. He 
particularly excels in concìucting opera, having few equals in this 
field. Blech has conducted in practically every great music center. 

His ability and talent are the more re- 
markable when one considers that the 
period of his official musical education, 
prior to his first engagement as con- 
cluctor, was not longer than one year. 

Blech was born in Aix-la-ChapelIe on 
April 21, 1871. He engaged in business, 
but decided to devote himself to music, 
and took up the study of theory with Ru- 
dorff. In 1892 he was engaged as con- 
ductor at the Aix-la-Chapelle Stadtthea- 
ter, where he conducted until 1898. He 
spent summers of the fìrst four years 
studying under Engelbert and Humper- 
dinck. In 1899 he became fìrst conductor 
at the Deutsches Landestheater, and in 1906, conductor of the 
Royal Opera House in Beiiin, where, since 1913, he has been 
General Musical Director. Since 1923 Blech has been fìrst con- 
ductor of the Charlottenburg Opera in Beiiin. 

His latest appointment was to the Beiiin Volksoper, thus com- 
pleting the rounds of the Beiiin Opera Houses, for he was also 
engaged at the Staatsoper. 

Blech is also a composer of great ability. He has written songs, 
piano pieces, symphonic poems ("Die None," "Trost in der Natur," 



"Walderwanderung"), choruses with orchestra for female voices, 
("Von den Englein") and "Sommernacht," one-act comic opera 
("Das War Ich," words by Batka, performed in Dresden in 
1902), "Cinderella," in three acts, performed in Prague in 1905, 
and "Versiegelt," in one act, performed in Hamburg in 1903; also 
a new setting of Raimund's "Alpenonig und Menschenfeind," the 
text recast by Batka as a three act opera, performed in Dresden 
in 1903 ; and the operetta, "Die Strohwitwe," perf ormed in Ham- 
burg, 1920. 


Artur Bodanzky was born in Vienna on December 16, 1877. He 
studied at the High School and Musical Conservatory in that city. 
Among his teachers in the latter institution were Griin (who was 
Fritz Kreisler's instructor), Graedener 
and J. N. Fuchs. In 1896 he joined the 
Imperial Opera Orchestra as violinist. 
His first engagement as conductor was at 
Budweiss, Bohemia, in 1900, after which 
he went to the Vienna Karlstheatre in a 
similar capacity. He conducted a season 
of light operas in St. Petersburg in 1901. 
Next year he returned to the Vienna 
Opera, where he became assistant to his 
friend, Gustav Mahler. Two years l.ater 
he went to Paris, conducting the lìrst 
French performance of the "Fleder- 

Returning to Vienna he became con- 
ductor at the Theatre der Wien, famous 
for its premieres of "Fidelio" and "The Magic Flute." For 
nearly three seasons, beginning in 1906, he was director at the 
Royal Opera in Prague and also conductor of the Philharmonic 
Concerts in the Bohemian capital. It was there that he married a 
Bohemiah society girl. In 1909 he was called to be director of the 
Grand Musical Theatre of Mannheim where he also conducted the 
Philharmonic Concerts and Oratorio Society Concerts. 

While a resident of that city he made frequent visits as guest 
conductor to London, Milan, Rome, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Brus- 
sels, Cologne, Vienna, Munich, and other prominent European mu- 
sical centers. He conducted the fìrst performance of "Parsifal" in 
England in 1914, Such was Bodanzky's reputation that when the 

104 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Metropolitan Opera Company of New York sought a successor to 
Alfred Hertz, his name was the first if not the only one seriously 
considered. He joined that organization in 1915. 

From that time on he has conducted Wagner operas at the 
Metropolitan Opera House as well as directed the New York 
Society of the Friends of Music, whose regular series of concerts 
in New York are among the outstanding events of the music sea- 
son. He presents ultra-modern works, gives premieres of novelties, 
and revives old and forgotten scores. 

As a conductor, Bodanzky has gained an enviable reputation. 
His movements, when he conducts, are alert and vivacious, and his 
orchestral army responds to every gesture. In repose, his mobile 
face is melancholy. The sharply modeled features, and fìrm thin 
lips, are contradicted by the large black-brown eyes with dancing 
golden flecks in them, and by the broad, sloping f orehead — the emo- 
tional brow of the born musician. Although he looks like a pessi- 
mist, he is actually the reverse. He is as fiery as a Hungarian and 
as elastic in his moods as a Viennese. At times he is as gay as a 
boy. It is his delight to conduct Italian operas, to lead Mozart and 
Johann Strauss, as well as to conduct Honegger or Ravel. 

His musical pedigree is sound, his personality strong, ingrati- 
ating. Few conductors have won their way so quickly. 

Bodanzky made his New York debut with Wagner's "Twilight 
of the Gods," and nobly he stood the tremendous test. There were 
a few slips, the cast was not impeccable — how could it have been, 
since the great Wagner singers of f ormer years have vanished ! but 
the conductor was the hero of the evening. For the first time in 
years, the audience was able to hear the singers. The sympathetic 
musician at the helm did not drown them with the turbulent waves 
of the score. There was power, potential and expressed ; there was 
poetry, and there was a rhythmic vitality that swept the listeners 
and musicians along on the wings of the mighty song of Wagner. 
A sagacious intellect controlled the work. 

Bodanzky differs from his predecessors, Hertz and Toscanini. 
He is a versatile, brilliant and subtle conductor, and it is a bold 
dissenter who takes general exception to his broad musical con- 
ception, though one may disagree as to details. He is a master of 
nuances. His orchestra is ever transparent. It vibrates, it glows, 
but it always reveals the musical structure. One can hear the inner 
voices, while the larger tonal balance and ensemble are in evidence. 
For the singers the conductor has peculiar care ; every entrance is 
signalled, every variation in tempo or rhythm indicated. 

Arthur Bodanzky is equally the genius in conducting grand 
opera, symphony, and oratorio. He is in fact the conductor par 



He is never nervous during a performance although afterward 
he may become unstrung, for he uses up an incredible amount of 
energy, and becomes discouraged over such trifles as a false en- 
trance by a singer, or the vagaries of the electric switch. At 
the fìrst "Tristan" he conducted at the Metropolitan Opera House, 
the light failed at his desk during a crucial moment. It made no 
difference in his conducting — he could conduct the entire work 
without a score — but it annoyed him, and later those about him 
saw his features grow melancholy, his eyes stared at imaginary 
windmills, and he straightway became the dreamer of dreams^who 
waved long, thin hands across the river of multicolored music; a 
veritable Don Quixote of the baton. 


Emil Cooper, the eminent Russian conductor, was born on Decem- 
ber 20, 1879, in Odessa, Russia. His father, Albert Cooper, was a 
musician and teacher of music, and the son grew up in musical 
environment. His fìrst violin lesson was taken at the age of six, 
and a year later he was discovered by Professor Freeman of the 
Odessa Conservatory. After six years under Professor Freeman's 
instruction he gave his fìrst recital as a wonder child. Among the 
many noted personages in the audience was the Turkish Ambas- 
sador to Russia, who invited him to give a concert at the palace 
of the Sultan Abdul Hamid. The Sultan, evidently quite pleased 
with the performance of the young virtuoso, extended to him the 
honor of remaining there as soloist for his pleasure. As protègè of 
the Sultan, he was fortunate in obtaining a most liberal, cultural 
and practical education, his teachers being the very instructors of 
the princes. While at court he gained proficiency and fluency in 
the French, German, English, Spanish, Greek and Turkish lan- 

After a four-year stay at the palace, he returned to Russia at 
the time of the Turkish massacre of Armenians. Upon his arrival 
in Odessa, when only at the age of seventeen, he was offered the 
direction of the symphony orchestra during the Exhibition at 
Odessa (1896). He rapidly rose to fame. In the next four years 
he held such high positions as conductor of the Castellano Company, 
a very famous Italian opera troupe, and the Prince Ziritelli Com- 
pany, with which he toured entire Russia and scored great success. 

In the year of 1900 the City Theatre was opened at Kiev, where 
Mr. Cooper in his capacity as main conductor displayed remarkable 
genius and ability. Six years later he was requested to fìll the posi- 

106 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

tion of chief conductor of the great Moscow Opera Company, 
Zinuria. After a three-year stay, fillecl with unquestionable suc- 
cesses, he was summoned to share the baton with the great master, 
Dr. Suk, in the Grand Imperial Opera at Moscow. During this ap- 
pointment, he accompanied Chaliapin as special conductor to Lon- 
don and Paris in order to present "Boris Godounow" at the above- 
mentioned places. It was during the war, following the departure 
of the great composer and conductor Nepravnik f rom the Marinsky 
Grand Opera at Petrograd that Emil Cooper was honored as his 
successor. At this stage in his career he was granted the degree of 
Professorship by the Petrograd Conservatory, at which institution 
he gave a series of lecture courses in conductorship. 

During the revolution, Cooper founded the famous Philharmonic 
Orchestra of Petrograd. In 1923 he began a world-wide concert 
tour as guest conductor of symphonic and special operatic produc- 
tions, performing in Germany, France, Spain, South America, Lon- 
don, and the Baltic States, and gaining great popularity. At this 
writing he is conductor at the Grand Opera House, Paris, France. 


Edouard Judas Colonne is principally famous as the founder of the 
Colonne Concerts in Paris. These he organized on March 2, 1873, 
at the Theatre Odeon. They have since become a permanent insti- 
tution in that city, being regularly given 
on Saturday and Sunday afternoons at 
the Theatre du Chatelet. They are at- 
tended mainly by students and business 

Colonne was born in Bordeaux on 
July 23, 1838. He was graduated from 
the Paris Conservatoire, under Girarcl 
and Sauzay (violin), and Elvart and A. 
Thomas (composition) . Colonne was the 
fìrst to produce such works of Berlioz as : 
Requiem, Romeo and Juliette, Damna- 
tion de Faust (which he performed at 
his own concerts over 200 times), Chris- 
ti's Childhoocì, etc. In 1878 he con- 
ductecl the offlcial concerts at the World Exhibition, Paris, and 
from 1892 till his death (March 28, 1910) he was first conductor 
at the Paris Opèra, 

Conductors 107 


The musical life of America took tremendous impetus from the 
energetic and intelligent labors of Leopold Damrosch. His name 
will always be mentioned with respect as one of the most talented 
and extraordinary conductors of the New 

Dr. Leopold Damrosch was born on 
October 22, 1832, in Posen (Polish Prus- 
sia) . He was graduated from the Berlin 
University as doctor of medicine in ac- 
cordance with his father's plans, but his 
own inclinations were toward music. He 
quickly negotiated a vocational transfer, 
making his initial appearance as a violin- 
ist at Magdeburg in 1855. He studied the 
violin under Dan and Bohmer. His pro- 
fìciency was so marked as to attract the 
attention of Franz List, then conductor 
of the Court Theatre at Weimar, who 
engaged the young artist as leading violinist of the opera orchestra. 
In 1858, Damrosch moved to Breslau to accept an appointment as 
conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra. He had married a 
highly gifted young singer, Helene von Heimburg, member of a 
noble family which traced its genealogy back to the thirteenth cen- 

Musical conditions, however, were miserable. There were no 
regular symphony concerts, but with the founding by him of the 
Breslau Orchestra Verein, such concerts were established. All the 
great artists who passed nearby, visited the city, and invariably 
stopped at the Damrosch home. Among these were Wagner, Liszt, 
Von Bulow, Taussig, Cornelius, Joachim, Rubinstein, Lassen, Auer, 
Clara Schumann, and Raff, with all of whom he established the 
most f riendly and intimate relations. 

From 1858 to 1860 Damrosch directed the Breslau Philhar- 
monic Society, and greatly aided in the popularizing of the works 
of Wagner, Liszt, and Berlioz. In 1860 he resigned this post, on ac- 
count of tours which he undertook with Taussig and von Bulow. 
From 1862 to 1871 we find him conducting an orchestral society in 
Breslau, which blossomed under his fine leadership. At the same 
time he founded a choral society, arranged chamber music soirèes, 
directed the Society for Classical Music, was for two years con- 
ductor of the Breslau City Theatre, and with all these activities 

108 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

still found time to appear as soloist in 
Leipzig, Hamburg and other cities. The 
music center of Breslau is deeply in- 
debted to the untiring efforts of this 
splendid musician and executive. 

Upon the outbreak of the Franco-Prus- 
sian war in 1870, Dr. Damrosch became 
more and more discontented with musi- 
cal, social and political conditions. It 
was with great difficulty that he was able 
to gain a living, the Breslau populace 
evincing more interest in material affairs 
than in art. A republican at heart, he 
hated the Prussian bureaucracy. When 
he received an invitation in 1871 to go 
to America as conductor of the Arion 
Society, he gladly accepted. 

He proceeded to New York to ascertain whether or not the new 
fìeld offered a career and a living. How well he gauged the situation 
and how well he fitted into the new order of things musical in 
America is a matter of history. 

In the United States Dr. Damrosch revealed an even greater 
organizing talent, bringing to its highest development the society 
he directed. 

In 1873 Rubinstein and Wieniawski came to America on a tour. 
While dining at the Damrosch home, the celebrated piano virtuoso 
expressed surprise that the doctor had not as yet achieved a posi- 
tion worthy of his European reputation and capacity. Theodore 
Thomas dominated the American orchestral fìeld and the general 
belief prevailed that there was not room for another similar or- 
ganization. But Rubinstein urged as a beginning, the formation 
of at least an oratorio society. This was soon accomplished, and 
eventually led to the founding of the Symphony Society in 1878. 
These two societies play the greatest role in the musical life of 
America to this day. 

Dr. Damrosch was a violinist of the fìrst order. Upon his ar- 
rival in New York he made his debut with the Philharmonic So- 
ciety, playing the Beethoven concerto. His compositions number 
some forty vocal and instrumental pieces, including a symphony, a 
festival overture, an oratorio, and several cantatas. 

In 1879 Dr. Damrosch gave the American public a first hearing 
of the "Damnation of Faust," by Berlioz. The event took place in 
Steinway Hall. It enlisted the combined forces of the Symphony 
Society, the Oratorio Society, the Arion Society, and several soloists. 
The performance was a sensation, and was repeated four times 
during the winter to crowded houses. Following up this advance, 



he conceived the idea of a monster music festival in May of 1881, 
with 1,200 singers, an orchestra of 300, and a group of noted solo- 
ists. The Seventh Regiment Armory in New York was filled with 
an audience of 10,000. The organ of St. Vincent's Church was 
transferred bodily. 

The works performed were : Berlioz's "Requiem," Rubinstein's 
"Tower of Babel," Handel's "Messiah," Bethoven's Ninth Sym- 
phony, and shorter selections. 

After the failure of Italian Opera under Abbey, Schoeffel, and 
Grau, the directors of the Metropolitan Opera House tendered 
Damrosch the directorship for the 1884-85 season. He accepted 
and sailed for Europe to procure singers for a season of German 
opera in New York. His productions, especially of the Wagner 
operas, proved epoch-making, but the burden of opera, concert and 
oratorio proved too great a strain. During a rehearsal of Bach's 
"St. Matthew's Passion," he collapsed and never recovered, passing 
away on February 15, 1885, of pneumonia. The responsibility of 
continuing his work fell upon his son, Walter. 

In My Musical Life, Walter Damrosch writes: 

"Money matters were to my father always so unimportant, as 
far as he was concerned, that I think he would have signed a con- 
tract in which he bound himself to pay $8,000 a year to the 
Metropolitan Opera House for the privilege of mentioning Wag- 
nerian opera there. . . . He accepted their proposition and was 
happy in the evident security of opera in German for many years 
to come. During this winter he would not give up his beloved Sym- 
phony nor Oratorio Societies, and he always insisted that the weekly 
Thursday evening rehearsals with the chorus of the Oratorio So- 
ciety were a rest for him from operatic affairs. During one of 
those rehearsals (in February, 1885), while preparing the 
'Requiem' of Verdi, he suddenly complained of feeling ill, and I 
rushed from the piano toward him, and, together with some of the 
singers, carriecl him to a cab and brought him home. Pneumonia 
set in, and he was too worn with the gigantic struggles of the win- 
ter to withstand it. . . ." 

Dr. Leopold Damrosch died at his home in New York on Febru- 
ary 15, 1885. 

During his lifetime the Columbia College of New York conferred 
on him the honorary degree of Doctor of Music. 

Following is a list of his compositions : Violin Concerto in D 
minor; "Sulamith," a sacred cantata for soprano, tenor, chorus, 
and orchestra ; "Ruth and Naomi," an oratorio ; church music pub- 
lished as "St. Cecilia," "Thou who Art God Alone," for baritone, 
male chorus and orchestra; the "Lexington Battle Hymn," for 
mixed chorus; "Cherry Ripe," a part song; also songs, concert 
pieces, violin pieces, et cetera. 

110 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Tiiis great American educator was born in Breslau on June 22, 
1859. He is the son of the American musical pioneer, Dr. Leopold 
Damrosch and began his musical education under his father's guid- 
ance in the city of his birth. At the age 
of eleven, he came to America to join his 
father there. In New York City he con- 
tinued his piano studies under Joseffy, 
Jean Vogt, Pruckner and Von Inten. 

From 1882 to 1885 Damrosch con- 
ducted the Denver Choral Club, organ- 
ized by himself and from 1884 to 1885 
was music supervisor in the public schools 
of that city. From 1885 to 1891 he was 
chorus master of the Metropolitan 
Opera House. In 1892 he resigned in fa- 
vor of the People's Singing Classes, 
which later developed into the body now 
known as the People's Choral Union, 
which has accomplished much for the cause of popular train- 
ing in choral singing in New York City. 

In 1893 Damrosch founded the Musical Art Society, an organi- 
zation of about sixty selected professional singers, who sang a 
capella music, old and new, with a degree of fìnish and style not 
heard in America before. Its dissolution occurred in 1920, due 
to lack of financial support. 

Frank Damrosch's greatest service in the cause of music in the 
land of his adoption is the establishment by him of the Institute 
of Musical Art in 1905. It was generously endowed by the Jewish 
philanthropist, James Loeb. This school has raised and stabilized 
the shifting standards of musical education and pedagogy in the 
United States, and has since its establishment graduated from its 
ranks many well-known artists, such as Mischa Levitzki and Sascha 
Jacobsen. Damrosch has done wisely in introducing the Anton 
Rubinstein requirements in his school, for no pupil is accepted who 
has not been graduated from high school, or who cannot show the 
equivalent of such an education. Solfeggio, harmony and theory 
are compulsory subjects. 

Dr. Damrosch is the author of A Popular Method in Sight 
Singing (1894), and Some Essentials of the Teaching of Music 
(1916). He was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Music 
by Yale University in 1904. 

His younger brother, Walter, speaks of him very enthusiastic- 



ally in his reminiscences : "He has always shared with me my love 
and enthusiasm for music in an equal degree. Frank always in- 
sisted that his talent was not great enough to warrant making mu- 
sic his prof ession ; and theref ore at the age of seventeen, he with 
great courage determined to go out West and begin a business 
career. He arrived in Denver, Colorado, with $100 in his pocket, 
and proceeded, in the manner of our American young men who 
have no intention of becoming a burden on their parents, to earn 
his own living. He began at the very bottom and slowly worked 
upwards, but suff ered intensely during his first years there from the 
almost total lack of music. In order to satisfy his needs he f ounded 
a Choral Society, with which he gave some of the old oratorios, and 
with characteristic audacity he supplemented this with an orchestra 
composed of a handful of professionals then playing at the Denver 
Theatres, and a few amateurs. The citizens of Denver, realizing 
that he was a real musician in spite of his modest estimate of him- 
self, urged him to give up business and turn altogether to 
music. . . ." 

He took their advice! Great praise is due those citizens for 
having started on his career a man who has probably done more 
for the cause of choral music and teaching in America than any 
one we know, excepting, perhaps, his venerable father and younger 


No ONE has more enriched the musical culture of America, pro- 
vided more musical entertainment for its people or labored more 
industriously in the cause of musical art than has Walter Johannes 
Damrosch. Fate seems to have prepared 
him for his vocation. As conductor, pi- 
anist and lecturer he has ever been ah 
alert and indefatigable advocate of good 

The first nine years of his life were 
full years. His father stimulated in him 
a love for the classics, his favorite read- 
ing being Greek mythology, fairy tales 
and biblical parables. Even at so early 
an age, his mind was searching out the 
dramatic. The artistic environment in 
which he lived brought him in contact 
with celebrities, Wagner, Liszt, Rubin- 
stein, von Bulow, Sarasate, Joachim, 
Clara Schumann, and many others. 

112 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Son of the famous Dr. Leopold Damrosch and brother of Frank 
Damrosch, Walter Johannes Damrosch was born in Breslau, Silesia, 
on January 30, 1862. His father preceded his family to America. 
Shortly after his departure, the f amily in Breslau received an en- 
thusiastic letter, bidding them f ollow him to New York. The mother, 
Walter, Frank, two younger sisters, and their Aunt Marie, set sail 
in August 18, 1871, in a little ship, the "Hermann" from Bremen. 

Dr. Damrosch's position was not worthy of his European repu- 
tation and his ability. Pioneering in any field is hazardous, diffi- 
cult, unremunerative. Only those with vision undertake it. Dr. 
Damrosch had one comfort in the realization that his two sons 
would continue the tradition of the family and carry his work to 
its ultimate fruition. 

Walter and his brother Frank attended public school in New 
York, the former continuing his piano lessons. Iie possessed a 
talent for painting which he put into practice by constructing a 
doll's theatre in which miniature productions of opera were 
given. In My Musical Life he writes: "I continued my 
studies of the piano under an old teacher, Jean Vogt by 
name, and after his return to Germany I studied with 
Pruckner, von Inten, Max Pinner and Boeckelmann. . . . My 
first appearance in an orchestra was, I am sorry to say, a 
rank failure. I was only a boy of fourteen years, and my 
father had prepared a charming operetta of Schubert's, 'Der 
Hausliche Krieg,' for a summer night's festival of the Arion 
Society. In this occurs a delightful march of the crusaders with 
one loud clash of the cymbals at the climax. It did not seem worth 
while to engage a musician at f ull union 
rates for this clash only, and I was there- 
fore entrusted with it. At rehearsals I 
counted my bars and watched for my cue 
with such pei'fection that the cymbals 
resounded with great success at the 
proper time and in the proper manner. 
But at the performance, alas, a great 
nervousness .fell upon nie, and as the 
march proceeded and came nearer and 
nearer to the crucial moment, my hands 
seemed paralyzed. When my father's 
fiashing eye indicated to me that the mo- 
ment had come, I simply could not seem 
to lift the cymbals, which suddenly 
weighed like a hundred tons. . . . As soon as I could I slipt out of 
the orchestra pit underneath the stage and into the dark night, 
feeling that life had no joy for me. I could not bear to hear the 
rest of the opera or to meet my f ather's reproachf ul eye. ..." 
In spite of this unhappy beginning, there followed his appoint- 



ment, at the age of eighteen, as director of the Newark Harmonic 
Society, the concerts of which were attended by Dr. Damrosch ancl 
analyzed by that thorough parent. In 1882 Walter was sent to 
Europe to advance his musical culture through contact with promi- 
nent musicians, among them Liszt, von Bulow, and Brahms. He 
was also privileged to meet Wagner and his wife at Bayreuth, 
where he attended the fìrst production of "Parsifal." Dr. Dam- 
rosch, who had been appointed director of the Metropolitan Opera 
House with a commission to inaugurate a season of German opera, 
imported some new artists and gained a pronounced success during 
the Winter of 1884-85. 

During the opera season, Walter was alert and toiling, on hand 
for every rehearsal, every performance. That sweet confidence 
between father and son was destined to bear fruit. While deeply 
engrossed in a multiplicity of duties, Walter became assistant to 
Director Stanton of the Metropolitan, and in the summer of 1885, 
again set sail for the land of artists, securing such prizes as Leh- 
mann, Brandt, Alvary, Fischer, and Seidl. Again in 1887, a journey 
across enabled him to have during an entire summer the inestimable 
privilege of analyzing the Beethoven symphonies with von Bulow. 
On the outward voyage he met Andrew Carnegie, who extended 
an invitation for a visit to Scotland. There he met James G. Blaine 
and his daughters, one of whom, Margaret, subsequently became 
Mrs. Damrosch, while the steel magnate was made president of the 
two Damrosch societies, a function which included the role of chief 
supporter ! Thus did f ate take a hand in shaping the career of the 
young musician. 

Upon the death of Dr. Damrosch, his responsibilities fell on 
Walter, then a youth of twenty-three. But his training and experi- 
ence had peculiarly fìtted him for the work. At the end of the 
second season with the Metropolitan Opera, he resigned, in order 
to return to his first love, the symphohy. During this decade of 
building up, Damrosch found time to compose an opera, "The 
Scarlet Letter," produced in 1896 ; the "Manilla Te Deum," in 1898 ; 
another opera "Cyrano de Bergerac," in 1913, as well as inci- 
dental music to the Greek plays for Margaret Anglin. A first Han- 
del festival in 1892; a first Beethoven cycle in 1909, repeated in 
1924 in New York and in Paris, celebrating the centennial of tHe 
Ninth Symphony, are testimony to his energy. In 1908 Saint-Saèns 
came to America at the invitation of Damrosch, ever on the qui 
vive for something of musical importance to present to the Ameri- 
can public. There were many first performances under his baton, 
among them "Parsifal" and "Samson et Delila" in concert form, 
as well as symphonies by Brahms and Elgar. 

His life was now a crowded one, and until his retirement in 

114 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

1927 has never ceased to be so. It provided enough material to fill 
the volume which appeared in print in 1924, under the title My 
Musical Life. The year 1891 was a fruitful one. Invited by Dam- 
rosch, the famous Russian composer Tschaikowsky came to Amer- 
ica. The fìrst American performance of his "Symphonie Pathe- 
tique" was given the following year under Damrosch's direction; 
this year also saw the fìrst appearance of Paderewski with his or- 
chestra. With the formation of the Damrosch Opera Company in 
1895, other great singers were introduced to American audiences, 
including Sucher, Brema, Ternina, Nordica, Klafsky, Bispham, In 
1900 he again conducted German opera at the Metropolitan under 

In 1912 Walter gave over the baton of the Oratorio Society to 
his brother, Frank, who presided over it from 1898 to 1912, resign- 
ing to become director of the Institute of Musical Art. Walter 
again resumed control from 1919 to 1922, then handed it over to 
Albert Stoessel, the present able conductor. 

Novelty and experiment are part of the Damrosch scheme of 
progress. He inaugurated the Sunday Symphony Concerts, devel- 
oped the Young People's Symphony Concerts (inaugurated by 
Frank), made possible the morning Symphony Concerts' for Chil- 
dren with explanatory talks, given in his inimitable manner. Dam- 
rosch found an active, efficient, and productive work during the 
World War. He was continuously busy as president of the Ameri- 
can Friends of Music in France, giving concerts, securing employ- 
ment for French musicians, and the like. Finally he went to 
France. He was instrumental in perfecting the organization and 
establishment of the Music School for Americans at Fontainebleau, 
and completed his magnifìcent labors by a tour with the entire New 
York Symphony Orchestra of France, England, Italy, Holland, and 
Belgium, in the Spring of 1920. 

The most celebrated artists in the world have appeared at his 
concerts, and honors have been bestowed upon him in many forms. 
He was made Doctor of Music by Columbia University, Officer of 
the French Legion of Honor, Chevalier of the Crown of Belgium, 
Ofìicer of the Crown of Italy. He also holds the gold medal of the 
Banda Municipale of Rome and the silver medal of the London 
Worshipful Company of Musicians. In 1922, Damrosch was the 
recipient of a signal honor when the combined orchestras of the 
New York Symphony, Philharmonic, and Philadelphia joined in a 
gala concert to establish a perpetual free-scholarship in the Ameri- 
can Academy in Rome, to be known as the "Walter Damrosch Fel- 
lowship in Music." 

The dean of American conductors, he has represented his coun- 
try abroad more often than any other musician. Damrosch has 



departed for Europe year after year with some message, some duty 
for those across the sea. One of his greatest achievements and 
lasting contributions to the cause of musical art was made at the 
time when everyone turned against Germany and German prod- 
ucts. Damrosch almost alone refused to banish his great German 
masterpieces from the programs, never conceding that Bach, 
Beethoven, Mozart, and Wagner were part of the conflict, but 
maintaining that art and war must be kept apart. 

In 1921, during the Congress of the British Music Society, he 
directed the London Symphony Orchestra, giving a program of 
American works. He also led the symphony orchestra of Stock- 
holm and that of the Paris Conservatoire. He conducted a Bee- 
thoven Cycle in Paris as a benefìt for the old conservatory students. 
On numerous occasions he has donated his services in the cause of 

The significant tour was that to Europe in 1920 which served as 
a fitting climax to his unparalleled record on this side. Through 
the generosity of Mr. Flagler, president of the society, the entire 
orchestra, on invitation of the French Minister of Fine Arts, jour- 
neyed abroad to win further honors and establish a record of being 
the first American orchestra to play in Europe. Twenty-eight 
concerts were given in nineteen cities of France, Italy, Belgium and 
Holland, the tour including London; all was effected in less than 
seven w.eeks. 

In prestige, the New York Symphony Orchestra ranks with 
the best institutions of its kind in any part of the world, while the 
name of Walter Damrosch stands out pre-eminently today as one 
who has served longest and accomplished most in the cause of 
musical art. During the forty-one seasons in which he has been 
director of the New York Symphony Orchestra, the wealth of edu- 
cational material he has brought to the attention of thousands of 
students, teachers, musicians and music-lovers is incalculable. 
Standing on the bed-rock of conservatisni with respect to the ideals 
of music, he has nevertheless been most liberal in serving the best 
of all schools. He has maintained an unswerving policy against 
the inartistic or banal. The masterpieces of the world's most emi- 
nent composers have been presented, many of them having been 
performed for the fìrst time under his baton. He has been a dili- 
gent student of schools, traditions and developments. The new, if 
it be good, has an equal chance with the old, but it must be good. 
Damrosch is a keen and merciless analyst. Should anything escape 
his eye, his ear locates it. 

As a worker, Damrosch is an electric dynamo, capable of con- 
tinuous performance. He fìnds time for every duty, every call. 
His labors have been productive and notable. Not the least was 

116 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

his share in the revival by Margaret Anglin of Greek plays, for 
which he wrote dignifìed and appropriate music. His lectures on 
opera and symphony are models of lucidity and entertainment, 
while as a speaker his natural wit, knowledge and earnestness have 
made him eagerly sought. His programs are constructed with the 
best taste and judgment. 

It was Walter Damrosch who inaugurated with a musical festi- 
val the opening of the now famous Carnegie Hall in 1891. In 
order to give special significance to the occasion, he invited Tschai- 
kowsky, with whom he became close friends. The following year 
he visited Cambridge University, on the occasion of Tschaikowsky's 
receiving the honorary degree of Music Doctor, together with four 
other famous musicians, Saint-Saèns, Boito, Grieg and Max Bruch. 
Of these four musicians, Saint-Saèns was a special friend of Dam- 
rosch, who conducted his concerts in New York in 1908. 

America owes to Walter Damrosch and his father an acquaint- 
ance with the world's great singers and musicians, most of them 
intimate friends of the conductor, particularly Lili Lehman, to 
whom Damrosch acknowledges a great many debts of a musical and 
practical nature. In the operatic ranks were: Seidl-Kraus, 
Schroeder, Hanstangel, Materna, Brandt, Schott, Staudigal, Robin- 
son. Following in his father's footsteps, Walter brought over Leh- 
mann, Alvary, Fischer, Seidl, Sucher, Gadski, Brown, Ternina, 
Kalfsky, Nordica, Schumann-Heink, and introduced the American 
baritone, Bispham — all famous names that have since disappeared 
from the musical calendar. In the concert fìeld, the artists assisting 
at symphony concerts are legion. In the early days, we had Wil- 
helmj, Rubinstein, Joseffy, Kubelik, D'Albert, von Bulow, Carreno, 
Paderewski, Sarasate, Ysaye, and all the great singers. 

It is to be regretted that Walter leaves no male heirs to carry on 
the rich tradition of their father, uncle and grandfather. Of his 
four daughters, Alice, Margaret, Leopoldine and Anita, only the 
third, Polly, is an excellent pianist. 

In 1920 Walter Damrosch celebrated the marriage of his daugh- 
ter, Gretchen, to Mr. Fandlater, in Paris. The occasion served for 
the gathering of the cream of Europe's musical circles, among 
whom were Saint-Saèns, the grand maitre, and Mme. Nellie Melba. 

America is also indebted to Walter Damrosch for the many new 
works of great value he has introduced here. Among these are 
"Samson and Delila" ; Edward Grell's "Missa Solemnis" ; Liszt's 
"Christus" ; Horatio Parker's "St. Christopher," and many others. 

As a composer, Damrosch has produced compositions which 
do not deserve the neglect which has been their fate. These works 
have an educational value that has never been appreciated. His 
operas, "The Scarlet Letter" and "Cyrano de Bergerac" have a dis- 
tinct place in musico-dramatic literature, and deserve study in spite 



of the fact that they are not in the repertory of present-day opera 
companies. His "Manila Te Deum," though composed for a speci- 
lic purpose, ought not, because of that fact, to be relegated to 
oblivion. There is no more stirring song in print than "Danny 
Deever," while his incidental music to the Greek plays is the work 
of a skilful musician and master of orchestral color. 

During the year of 1925 there was talk in Washington of ap- 
pointing Damrosch as America's ambassador to Germany, but for 
one reason or another he did not choose to yield his baton to the 
diplomat's robe, as had his colleague Paderewski. 

On March 27, 1925, Damrosch's friends and followers cele- 
brated the fortieth anniversary of his presidence over the fortunes 
and destinies of the New York Symphony Orchestra, a unique rec- 
ord in the annals of the musical history. 


Issai Dobrowen has achieved considerable reputation as com- 
poser, piano-virtuoso, conductor, and stalf manager. His recent 
mounting of "Boris Godunov" in Dresden, and at the Berlin Volk- 

soper, aroused unusual critical admira- 

tion, as has his conducting of symphonic 
concerts in the German capital. 

Dobrowen was born in 1894 at Nizhni 
Novgorod, and obtained his principal 
musical education at the Moscow Con- 
servatory, where he studied piano with 
Jaroschewsky and Igumnoff, and com- 
position with Taneieff. Graduated from 
this institution in 1911 as gold medalist, 
he pursued his piano studies with Godow- 
sky in Vienna. He was named professor 
at the Moscow Philharmonic in 1917, and 
two years later accepted the conductor- 
ship of the Grand Theatre, in that city, 
continuing until the spring of 1922, when he resolved to settle in 

"Although Dobrowen is thoroughly modern in his harmonically 
rhythmic conception of sound, he does not belong to any of the 
radical groups of the present generation of composers. He has in- 
scribed on his banner neither the Schonberg school, nor the lately 
proclaimed "inanimation" of music originating from his fellow- 
countrymen at present active as composers in France." 

118 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In his music he is above all a man of feeling, not merely a me- 
chanical sound apparatus. Among his compositions are: "The 
Thousand and One Nights" (1922), a musical fairy play; music 
for Verhaeren's "Philip II"; two piano sonatas; a violin sonata; 
a piano concerto in C sharp minor, etc. 

During the winter season of 1924-25 he was first conductor at 
the Volksoper in Berlin and successfully produced "Boris Godu- 
now," "Carmen" and other operas. At the same time he conducted 
concerts with the Philharmonic Orchestra in Berlin, Dresden, 
Magdeburg, Halle, Stockholm, Helsingfors, as well as Moscow and 


Oscar Fried is one of the outstanding figures in the German 
musical world. He is an excellent interpreter of opera as well as 
of symphonic ancl choral music. He was born in Berlin on August 
10, 1871, and is a pupil of Humperdinck 
and Philip Scharwenka. He started his 
musical career as a hornist in various 
orchestras. In 1904 he received his fìrst 
engagement as conductor with the Stern 
Gesangsverein in Berlin, and in 1907 
with the Geselschaft der Musikfreunde. 
From 1910 on he acted as conductor of 
important orchestral organizations, de- 
voting himself to producing novelties. 
He also conducted the Berlin Philhar- 
monic Orchestra at the Deutsches Opera 
House in Berlin, and toured Germany, 
Scandinavia and the important cities of 

Fried has also found time for composition. The following is 
a partial list of his works: Choral piece, "Song of Intoxication" 
(text from Nietzsche), opus 11 ; Harvest Song (text from Dehmel), 
opus 15 ; Preludes and Double Fugues for large string orchestra, 
opus 10; pieces for thirteen wind instruments and two harps, 
opus 2; songs, opera 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 13; "Radiant Night," for 
solo and orchestra (text from Dehmel), opus 9; Female Choruses, 
opera 12 and 14. 




The SON OP A Russian army bandmaster, Gregory Fitelberg was 
born in Dinaburg, formerly a Russian province, on October 
18, 1879. By residence and culture he was completely identi- 
fied with the Polish nation. In 1891 he 
entered the Warsaw Music Institute, 
where he studied theory with Noskowski 
and violin with Barcewitz. He was 
graduated in five years and immediately 
became violinist of the Warsaw Opera 
Theatre Orchestra. In 1896 his "sonata 
for violin and piano," opus three, won 
the first Paderewski prize in the Inter- 
national competition at Leipzig. In 1901 
he was awarded the Zamoyski prize for 
his "F minor Trio," opus 10, for violin, 
'cello and piano. 

In 1902 he became solo player at the 
Warsaw Philharmonic and was conductor 
there from 1907 to 1911. In 1912 he led concerts of Polish music, 
especially the music of Karol Szymanowski, and became conductor 
of the Imperial Opera in Vienna. He soon gave up this post to 
return to Warsaw. During the Russian Revolution he was a con- 
ductor of opera and symphony in Leningrad. He was also con- 
ductor of the Russian Ballet Company, with Pavlowa and Fokine. 

Although not a familiar name to America, he is considered in 
Europe as ranking with the ablest conductors. The breadth and 
fire of his interpretations recall Otto Klemperer. His "Trio" is in 
the pseudo-classical style, and is extremely sentimental, but broad 
and melodious, while his latest work is impressionistic, exhibiting 
bold and complicated harmonies and richly-colored orchestrations. 
Fitelberg's work since his "Trio" has been growing increasingly 
modernistic, and he is now spoken of as the bold and progressive 
pioneer of modern Polish music. 

In 1905 Fitelberg founded, together with Karol Szymanowski, 
Ludomir Rozycki, and Apolinary Szeluta, the Society of Young Pol- 
ish Composers, which has issued many remarkable compositions. 

A list of Fitelberg's work f ollows : symphonic poem, "The Song 
of the Falcon" (from Gorky), opus 18; "Protesilaus and Laodamia" 
(from Wyspanski), opus 24; violin concerto, opus 13; two over- 
tures, opus 14 and 17; Piano Trio, opus 12; two Violin Sonatas, 
opus 2 and 13 ; Songs, opera, 19, 21, 22, and 23. 

120 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Although still in his early thirties, Nathaniel Finston can boast 
of a place in the new fìeld of cinema synchronization that is rapidly 
developing from the piano thumpings of yesteryear's nickelodeons 
to the dignity of an independent and col- 
ored art of his own. 

It is almost unbelievable how much this 
man has to carry in his head in the way 
of scoring, synchronizing and directing 
his motion picture theatres. He has to 
furnish suitable music not only for one 
theatre, but for a whole circuit of thea- 
tres ; not only in one city but in three — all 
at a great distance from one another. It 
is interesting to see this man darting 
f rom on theatre to another and f rom one 
city to another — today in Boston, tomor- 
row in New York, and the day following 
in Chicago. 

Nathaniel Finston was born on February 24, 1892, in New 
York City. His father, a Russian, came of a family of professional 
people. His mother is of Austrian origin ; her f ather was a fisher- 
man by trade and a violinist by avocation, performing at peasants' 
weddings and local celebrations. Finston says of himself : 

"I received my early training in public school and for a time 
attended the City College of New York. It was my grandfather's 
brilliant idea to get me to study the violin in order to keep me off 
the streets, so he went to a pawn shop and bought my fìrst violin 
for two dollars. Of course, this violin was big enough for him to 
use it also, and he was longing to play again. My fìrst impression 
of music was hearing my grandf ather play by ear. He tried to teach 
me to play by ear, but could not make me understand him. 

"About a year later, a friend of the f amily, Mr. Gusikoff, father 
of the well-known violinist, Michael Gusikolf, advised me to take 
the violin and call on one of his friends; to this friend I think I 
owe my whole musical career. This man never made his mark in 
life, but he devoted his best efforts to his violin pupils. His name is 
Solomon Elin, a graduate of the Moscow Conservatory for years, 
a member of the New York Symphony and other organizations. 

"I played with the Russian Symphony Orchestra, under Modest 
Altschuler, for five years, and for two years in the Boston Opera 
Company. After this I came to New York City and played for two 
years with the New York Symphony as assistant concertmaster un- 



der Walter Damrosch. In the subsequqent two years I became a 
member of the New York Philharmonic under Josef Stransky, a 
marvelous body of orchestral players. During my years in orches- 
tra, which in all were eleven, I also played under Safonoff, Bodan- 
sky, Gabrilovitch, and Ernest Bloch. 

"About this time, the motion picture theatre developed musical 
ambitions. Having played for eleven consecutive years in sym- 
phonic orchestras, opera, quartets, salon orchestras, and similar or- 
ganizations, I had become dissatisfìed with my prospects. An idea 
struck me that I could probably utilize my vast musical experience 
in other ways. I applied to Hugo Riesenfeld. During the fìrst 
association of Mr. Riesenfeld and Mr. Rothapfel at the Trilby 
Theatre, I was engaged as one of the concert masters. 

"A year and a half later I was engaged as assistant conductor 
at the Rialto Theatre, and two and a half years later I was engaged 
by the Capitol Theatre in New York. Later I went to Chicago, 
where I remained for fìve years with a then unknown firm, Bala- 
ban & Katz, but who now are credited with the marvelous improve- 
ment of the movie theatres. 

"I have been for fìve years director of all the productions in the 
Chicago Theatre, and now am in charge of all productions in the 
Publix chain of theatres, comprising many hundreds in the United 
States. For a position of this kind is it necessary to know the jazz 
mind as well as the opera and symphony mind." 

Finston's glowing eyes are ever restless, and the sparkle in 
them speaks volumes for his bountiful mental, physical, and spir- 
itual resources. His is a clear, logical, and analytical mind. 


Alfred Goodman, composer and conductor of musical comedies and 
operettas, was born on August 12, 1890, in Nikopol, a small town 
on the River Dnieper near Odessa, Russia. His father was an 
orthodox cantor, and Alfred received his rudimentary education 
from his father and brothers, who were all educated musicians. 

When Alfred was seven years old, his parents brought him to 
America. He spent his adolesce.nce in Baltimore, where he received 
his entire schooling. For ten years he studied piano, organ, 
harmony, composition and singing at the Peabody Conservatory 
in Baltimore. 

Goodman married before he was twenty; thus there was the 
necessity for immediate and additional income. He thereupon 
secured a position with the music publishing fìrm of Witmark as 
their Chicago orchestrator and arrived in Chicago to hear that 

122 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Los Angeles was a good unworked field. At a Los Angeles 
theatre, he drifted into conducting, for which he was paid, 
though not for the music he composed for the local produc- 
tions. One night, while thus officiating, Al Jolson, the celebrated 
comedian, was in the audience. Then and there Goodman's 
troubles were ended. Jolson arranged to have him come to New 
York as his own particular conductor; he has led for Jolson ever 

The flrst Jolson show in which he thus participated was 
"Sinbad," and J. J. Shubert, the musical producer, liked his 
methods so much that he was engaged as the general musical 
director and producer of musical scores for the Shubert Theatrical 

He is becoming well known as a composer, too, and has 
prepared and composed and interpolated on everything from 
"Artists and Models" to "Maritza" by Emmerick Kalman. He has 
also conducted musical comedy, Gilbert and Sullivan operas, and 
a summer stock season of Grand Opera. 


Edwin Franko Goldman is known to America as the organizer 
of the "Symphony Orchestra in Brass." This orchestra was 
founded in 1918 when Goldman conceived the idea of free summer 
concerts in N'ew York City. He himself raised the necessary funds 
to begin. Since then he has given free public concerts every sum- 
mer at Columbia University campus and at Central Park, drawing 
huge audiences. This European institution of park concerts was 
hardly known to Americans before. Goldman was the fìrst musi- 
cian to be officially honored by the city of New York when in 1919 
the mayor presented him with a gold watch. 

Edwin Franko Goldman was born in Louisville, Kentucky on 
January 1, 1878. Both his parents were musicians, having studied 
violin and piano in Europe for many years. His mother appeared 
in public when a very young girl. At the age of eight Edwin began 
to study the cornet. At fourteen, his success in an examination for 
admission to the National Conservatory of Music won him a free 
scholarship. (Dvoràk was then director of the Conservatory.) For 
a year Goldman studied composition with him. Then Jules Levy, 
the famous cornetist, accepted him as a free pupil. At seventeen 
he was engaged as cornetist at the Metropolitan Opera House where 
he remained for ten years. 

Since resigning from the Metropolitan, he has devoted most 
of his time to conducting and writing. 




One op the ablest young French conductors is Vladimir Golsch- 
mann, who was born in Paris on December 16, 1893, of Russian 
Parents. He studied violin, piano, harmony, and counterpoint, 
and on maturing played as violinist with 
various Paris orchestras. 

Golschmann came to public notice in 
1919, when he organized the "Concerts 
Golschmann," which have popularized 
most of the works of the modern French 

School at the Salle des Agriculteurs, 

Salle Gaveau, Theatre de Champs-Ely- 
sèes. The fìrst signifìcant event of this 
foundation was his presentation in 1920 
of Milhaud's "Boeuf sur le Toit." 

Golschmann is an excellent inter- 
preter of polytonal music, and is natur- 
ally the champion par excellence of the 
Groupe des Six. He was also the con- 
ductor of the Diaghilev Ballet in 1920, and directed the fìrst 
post-war production in Paris of Stravinsky's "Sacre du Prin- 
temps." He was invited to Brussels as guest conductor of the 
"Concerts Populaires" in 1924, and on October 19 and 20 
presented there the first hearing of Honegger's "Pacifique 231," 
the Queen and Princess Elizabeth being present. Golschmann was 
summoned to the royal box to receive Her Majesty's congratula- 

On November 29 and 30, the young French concluctor presided 
over the famous Pasdeloups Orchestra in Paris of which Renè 
Baton is the regular conductor. In March, 1924, Golschmann was 
engaged as guest conductor with the New York Symphony Orches- 
tra, and in December of the same year conducted a series of 
concerts at Carnegie Hall, Aeolian Hall, and the Brooklyn 
Academy of Music, where he successfully performed excerpts from 
Rameau's "Casfor and Pollux," Stravinsky's "A Bird" suite, 
Roussel's "The Spider's Banquet," Beethoven's "Seventh Sym- 
phony" and Honegger's "Pastorale d'Ètè." 

The fìrst impression of importance that Golschmann made in 
America was as conductor of the Royal Swedish Ballet. 

His wife, Mme. M. Soyer, is a lyric soprano at the Monnaie 
Theatre in Brussels. She is a graduate of the 'cello class of 
the Paris Conservatory and made her debut with that instrument. 

124 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Louis Hasselmans, who has been in charge of the music prepara- 
tion of the French repertory at the New York Metropolitan Opera 
House and conductor of it's performances since the last half of the 
1921-22 season, was born in Paris, on 
July 25, 1878. 

The young Louis (whose father was 
a celebrated harpist and teacher on that 
instrument at the Paris Conservatoire) 
entered the Paris Conservatoire to study 
the 'cello under J. Delsart, harmony un- 
der A. Lavignac, while Jules Massenet 
was his teacher for instrumentation, and 
B. Godard for chamber-music. From this 
institution he was graduated with the 
fìrst prize at the age of fìfteen. 

His musical career started as 'cellist 
of the Concerts Lamoureux. In 1904 he 
became 'cellist of the famous Caplet 
Quartet, with which organization he toured France, Germany, 
Great Britain, Italy, Holland, and other countries. 

But he soon manifested great abilities as a conductor. As a 
consequence, he made his dèbut as conductor of the Lamoureux 
Orchestra in two concerts (1905). The talent displayed on those 
occasions instantly marked Hasselmans' future, and there was a 
public response to the founding, in 1907, of the Hasselmans So- 
ciety Concerts in the Salle Gaveau. 

Called by Albert Carrè to become fìrst conductor at the Paris 
Opèra Comique, Hasselmans resigned his place in the Caplet Quar- 
tet. His destiny was, however, apparent; so much that it was 
natural he should have yielded to the invitation to conduct for the 
Montreal Opera Company during 1911-13, and in 1913-14 to lead 
the twenty-four programs of the Marseilles Concerts Classiques. 
At the end of the World War, Cleofonte Campanini secured Has- 
selmans for the Chicago Opera Association, where he remained 
as head of the French repertoire in 1918-20. 

Louis Hasselmans returned to Paris, where he again conducted 
at the Paris Opera Comique in 1920-21. It was from that institu- 
tion that he went to the New York Metropolitan Opera House. His 
accomplishment there and at Ravinia — near Chicago — (where he 
has conducted uninterruptedly since the summer of 1921), are 
matters of public record. 




As A pianist and conductor Alexis Hollaender won notice equally 
with his brother Gustav. Alexis has for many years conducted 
the Berlin "Cecilia Verein," whose object it is to present seldom 
heard choral works. He succeeded in 
carrying out the aims of the organiza- 
tion which he still manages, though he 
is now in his eighty-seventh year. 

He was born on February 25, 1840 
in Ratibor, Silesia. In 1858 he was 
graduated from the Elizabeth Gymnasi- 
um in Breslau, and entered the Berlin 
University, attending the Academy of 
Arts at the same time. He was a pupil 
of K. Bohmer, and also studied piano 
and composition at the Royal Academy 
in Berlin. In his public appearances 
that followed he advocated the works 
of the then little-known Robert Schu- 
mann. From 1861 to 1888 Hollaender was piano teacher and 
instructor of choral singing at Theodore Kullak's New Academy 
of Musical Art, and from 1888 he directed his own music school. 
Previous to that, in 1877, he was engaged as professor of singing 
at the Victoria School, and from 1903 his excellent lectures on 
music were heard at the Humbolcìt Academy. 

Hollaender wrote a Requiem for six voices, a piano quintet, a 
trio, piano pieces, songs, chorals, songs a ccvpella, fìve-voice chor- 
uses, etc. 

In 1875 Hollaender received the title of King's Music Director, 
and in 1888 the title of Professor. Hollaender is the husband of 
the famous singer, Anna Becky. 


Agide Jacchia, the Italian conductor and composer, was 
born in Lugo, Romagna on January 5, 1875. He studied at the 
Conservatories of Parma, Pesaro, and Milan, where he was a 
favorite pupil of Mascagni. He made his debut as conductor of 
the Teatro Grande in Brescia in 1898, and continued to conduct 
there, filling engagements as well in Ferrara and Venice until 

126 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

1902, when he visited the United States with Mascagni. During 
the season of 1903-6 he conducted at Milan, Leghorn, and Siena, 
and from 1907 to 1910 he led a season at the Academy of Music 
in New York. From 1910 to 1914 he was director of the Montreal 
National Opera Company in Canada. For the season 1914-15 
Jacchia was chief conductor of the Century Opera Company in New 
York, and in the seasons following conducted the Boston National 
Opera Company, later becoming director of the popular concerts at 
Symphony Hall in Boston. Since 1919 he has been director of the 
Music Institute of that city. 

He has written a "Plymn to Rossini," a prize Cantata (1898), 
a Central-American National Hymn, and other works. 


Victor Kolar, assistant conductor to Gabrilowitch of the De- 
troit Symphony Orchestra, is a gifted and promising young 
musician. He was born of Bohemian parents in Budapest, Hun- 
gary, on February 12, 1888. At the Prague Conservatory he 
studied violin, and took composition with Dvoràk. In 1904 he 
came to America and joined the ranks of the violinists at the 
Chicago Symphony, but forsook them the following year for the 
Pittsburg Orchestra. From 1907 to 1919 he was a member of the 
New York Symphony Orchestra, also acting as assistant conductor 
since 1915. 

Kolar is now regarded as one of the outstanding young Ameri- 
can composers. His symphonic poem "Hiawatha" was performed 
by the Pittsburg Orchestra on January 31, 1908. Another sym- 
phonic poem, "A Fairy Tale," was given a performance by the 
New York Symphony Orchestra on February 16, 1913. This same 
orchestra also performed his symphonic suite, "Americana," opus 
20, on January 25, 1914, and his "Symphony in D" on January 28, 
1916. Kolar's "Slovakian Rhapsody" for orchestra was performed 
at the Norfolk Connecticut Musical Festival on June 7, 1922. 

Conductors 127 


During the famous Peace Conference in Vienna in 1813, Czar 
Alexander I is said to have exclaimed in Napoleon's presence, "I 
am*the greatest here," to which the short corporal replied: "No, 
you are undeniably the tallest, but I am 
the greatest." Otto Klemperer, on the 
other hand, is the tallest, and also one of 
the greatest among contemporary con- 
ductors. Looking seven or eight feet tall, 
he towers above the world's leading 
orchestras, without needing the custom- 
ary conductor's platform, and magnetizes 
his men with his Promethean fìre. His 
appearance calls to mind the late Gustav 
Mahler, Klemperer's friend and patron. 
Members of the orchestras, accustomed 
to leaders of lesser dimensions, look for 
Klemperer's baton, but find their eyes on 
a level with his coat buttons. 
Otto Klemperer is a man of dark complexion, sensitive features, 
and expressive eyes. Now crouching, now rising to his full and 
enormous height, or bending double, like an immense bird, over 
the orchestra, he pulls or drives tone from it. In spite of his 
mannerisms in conducting, his sincerity is unquestionable, and 
whether or not, in these observant days, his gestures appeal to the 
gallery, the basic and important fact is that they draw immediate 
response from the orchestra, that the men are infected with the 
conviction and the enthusiasm of the leader, and that his spirit is 
felt in turn by the audiences. 

I have had the pleasure of playing with the New York Sym- 
phony, under Klemperer's leadership during the seasons of 1926 
and 1927. In the course of a conversation with him he related to 
me these facts about himself. 

His paternal grandfather was a teacher of religion and other 
subjects in Prague, and his father was a merchant. His mother, 
whose maiden surname was Nathan, was born in Hamburg, and 
was an accomplished pianist. His maternal grandmother, Frau 
Nathan (nèe Ree) was of French ancestry. Like Walter Dam- 
rosch, director of the New York Symphony, Klemperer was born 
in Breslau on May 15, 1885. 

His parents moved to Hamburg four years after his birth. He 
entered at an early age the Hochs Conservatory in Frankfurt-am- 

128 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Main, and later became a pupil of Scharwenka in Berlin. Klemp- 
erer is one of the few notable conductors who have never played 
in an orchestra. His fìrst intention was to be a pianist. His piano 
teacher was Ivan Quast, and his violin teacher was Zayic; and 
Hans Pfitzner taught him composition. 

In the year 1905, Klemperer was assistant conductor to Oscar 
Fried in Beiiin. During that time Max Reinhardt came to Beulin 
to put on an Offenbach operetta. He wanted a conductor. Some 
one suggested "that great tall fellow, Klemperer, young, to be sure, 
but very talented." One of Gustav Mahler's works was given its 
fìrst performance in Beiiin. There were two orchestras, one of 
them back-stage, which Klemperer was chosen to conduct. 

'Mahler was there and being well pleased with the work of the 
long-legged boy, took an interest in him. It was through Mahler 
that Klemperer in 1917 got his fìrst position — that of conductor 
at the Deutsches Landstheatei' in Prague. 

Klemperer treasures as a memento a letter given him by Mahler 
at that time. "I fìnd Herr Klemperer extraordinarily good, in spite 
of his youth, already a well routined musician, who is predestined 
for a conductor's career. I guarantee good results in case of his 
appointment to the post of conductor and always stand ready 
personally to co-operate with him and help him." 

In 1909 Klemperer was appointed conductor at Hamburg, again 
on Mahler's recommendation. Then he went as conductor to 
Bremen and Strassburg, and in 1917 to Kòln. During the past 
several years Klemperer has been engaged at Wiesbaden, where he 
is the "Volcano of Wiesbaden." He spends half of the year travel- 
ling as guest conductor in Russia, Italy, Spain, Austria, and the 
larger cities of Germany. 

He was among the fìrst to introduce modern French and Italian 
composers in Germany. He is also well-known for his readings of 
Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, and Mahler, as well as Richard 
Strauss. Klemperer is spoken of "as perhaps the greatest of all 
conductors in Europe today, with a positively fascinating persbn- 
ality, and as an artist is equally at home in classic as well as 
modern music." 

His success in Russia was phenomenal, probably greater than 
in any other country. He was invited there for three successive 
seasons, and is now again invited, this time to conduct the 
Beethoven Festival, planned in Moscow, Leningrad and other large 
Russian cities during 1927. 

During the season of 1925-26 Klemperer was engaged as guest 
conductor with the New York Symphony, where the writer, being 
a member of the orchestra, had an opportunity to study the man 
and the conductor. He wields a precise and rhythmic stick over 



his orchestra; the patterns he lays out are lucid. He knows the 
exact capabilities of his players and how to draw these capabilities 
out. A symphony for him is comprised of sallies, dartings, appre- 
hensions. His posture seems to say to his men: "There is some- 
thing coming now, something extraordinary ; you'll never guess 
what ; watch out ! Around the corner of the next phrase something 
very exciting is lurking — watch me get excited and double up 
when it arrives!" 

Klemperer earned particular gratitude in New York for his 
practical championship of Bruckner. It takes courage and convic- 
tion for a visiting conductor to lead this modernist's "Eighth 
Symphony" three times in quick succession in spite of an anti- 
Bruckner prejudice which exists among New Yorkers. 

Klemperer won immediate enthusiastic recognition from the 
New York audiences and reviewers. This is the more to his credit 
since, during his first visit to the United States he had to compete 
with such colossi as Toscanini, Mengelberg and Furtwaengler, who 
were conducting other orchestral organizations in New York at the 
same time. As a result of his ten weeks' engagement, Klemperer 
has grown so greatly in public favor that he is now perhaps New 
York's favorite conductor. And let it be added that he came to the 
United States practically unknown and unheralded. The result of 
his first engagement with the New York Symphony was an imme- 
diate re-engagement for a season of fifteen weeks for the ensuing 

The press was unanimous in declaring his interpretations of 
Strauss' "Till Eulenspiegel" and "Todt and Verklarung" the out- 
standing musical events of the season. Klemperer is aflame with 
whatever music he interprets, and he conducts everything by 
faultless and letter-perfect memory. 

Being interested in this phenomenal memory of his, I once 
asked Klemperer whether it could be attributed to his sight or his 
ear, to which he pointed at his temple, saying, "Everything is here. 
It is only necessary for me to hear or to play the score a few 
times, and it at once sinks whole into my memory." 

Klemperer is also a composer of consequence, although his 
extensive occupations as conductor absorb most of his time and 
energy necessary for creative work. The following are his pub- 
lished works: "Missa Sacra," in C, for solo, choir, children's 
choir, organ and orchestra; Psalm 13, for bass solo, organ and 
orchestra ; a coloratura aria added to Rossini's "Barber of Seville," 
and several songs. 

Klemperer is also an excellent pianist and accompanist. On the 
occasion of Lawrence Tibbett's appearance with the New York 
gymphony as a substitute for Mme. Austral, Klemperer accom- 

130 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

panied him in Schumann's "Dichterliebe" cycle, playing from 

Otto Klemperer accepted an offer to conduct twelve concerts 
at the Colon Theatre, of Buenos Aires, during September and Oc- 
tober of 1926. Here he won the same recognition from Latin audi- 
ences that he earned throughout Europe and the United States. 

In September of 1926 he accepted the position of general music 
director of the Staats Opera in Berlin offered him by the Prussian 
Kultur-Minister, Dr. Becker. His contract is for ten years be- 
ginning in September of 1927. Immediately after signing this 
contract, he engaged the two well-known conductors, Alexander 
Zemlinsky and Fritz Zweig as his assistants. 


The NAME of Hermann Levi is intimately associated with the 
history of the Munich Theatre, and particularly with the shifting 
fate of Richard Wagner's music dramas. 

Levi was born on November 7, 1839, in Giessen, where his 
father was chief rabbi. From 1872 till his death he was General 
Musik Direktor and Court Conductor in Munich. On July 28, 1882, 
he conducted the fìrst performance of "Parsifal" in Bayreuth. 
Iie was one of the most ardent apostles of Wagner, and his word 
was considered fìnal in debates on the significance of any of 
Wagner's musìc dramas. In Levi's eyes art stood higher than 
any current party politics. He was governed by wholesome, simple 
instincts, and his worship of the Bayreuth idol did not prevent him 
from giving other gods their due. 

Hermann Levi was a pupil of Lachner in Mannheim, and later 
entered the Leipzig Conservatory, where he was a pupil of Ritz and 
Hauptmann. Like a great many other musicians of his time, he 
was fìnally attracted to Paris. Levi's career begins with his 
appointment as General Musik Direktor at Saarbrucken in 1859. 
Two years later he was concìuctor of the German Opera in Rotter- 
dam, and from 1864 to 1872 he was court conductor at Karlsruhe, 
after which he held the same position in Munich. 

Wagner's many letters to Levi speak of the ever growing 
intimacy between the two musicians, from the time of their 
meeting in Mannheim in 1871. 

Hermann Levi died in Munich on May 13, 1900. 

Conductors 131 


Serge Koussevitzky's place in the world of music is unique, for 
the celebrated Russian conductor is also universally known for 
his mastery of that ponderous — and, in the hands of lesser men, 
lugubrious — instrument of the orchestra, 
the contra-bass. As conductor he was 
widely known in pre-war days. As 
leader of his own orchestra in Moscow, 
which he conducted almost without 
interruption during the war and the 
revolutionary upheaval in Russia, Kous- 
sevitzky gained recognition as one of 
Russia's foremost conductors. 

Richard Strauss once astonished the 
world by saying, a propos of "Tristan" : 
"Believe me, the brain that could pour 
out that passionate music must have 
been as cold as ice." This paradox is 
the sober truth. The more an artist is 
on fìre, the cooler must be the head and hand that direct the fire. 
Koussevitzky has this central iciness to an extraordinary degree. 
It would hardly be possible to raise some works to a higher 
pitch of nervous incandescence than he does ; but this nervousness 
never gets out of hand. It is Koussevitzky's servant, not his 
master. The excitement is always perfectly under control; one 
great plastic line runs through the work. 

Although Koussevitzky is known as the "apostle of the 
moderns," he does not devote himself exclusively to them. He 
presents unusual programs, that is, programs that have not become 
platitudinous through repetition; these include seldom hearcl 
symphonic works of the older masters. 

Koussevitzky is also an extraordinary and thoroughly original 
interpreter of the classics. He plays the works of Beethoven as 
though they had been written yesterday. He does not build up a 
fanciful picture of this great classicist as he was, one hundred 
years ago, and does not insist on making him behave in the 
decorous way in which some conductors think a classic ought to 

It is a spirit of dissatisfaction with ready-made interpre- 
tations of life and art that has made Serge Koussevitzky the 
fìgure he is in the world of music. He is continually searching, 
not merely for novelty, but for new contributions, new explana- 
tions, new truths. Claimed both by the romanticists and the 

132 Famoas Musicians of a Wandering Race 

classicists, he seems to have applied the 
theories of the first to his life and the sec- 
ond to his art. His interpretations are 
the most authoritative, particularly that 
of Scriabin. 

Serge Koussevitzky was born in Tver 
in 1874. His father was a member of 
a symphony orchestra. When only six 
the boy received music lessons, and at 
nine took part in the orchestra of the 
Tver City Theater. Three years later 
he began to conduct a provincial the- 
atre orchestra, and to compose music for 
dramatic representations. In 1890 he 
entered the Conservatory of the Moscow 
Philharmonic Society as a student of composition and orches- 
tral conducting, and, in order to qualify for a scholarship 
also studied the double-bass under the famous Professor Bam- 
baussec. His studies terminated, he obtained a post as double- 
bass soloist at the Moscow Imperial Opera, and for several years 
appeared in all the principal centers as a double-bass virtuoso. 
He never lost sight, however, of his real aim, and in 1909 organ- 
ized a student orchestra in Berlin of the best classical and 
modern music, gaining experience in interpreting. Returning to 
Russia, he established his own Symphony organization in Moscow, 
and gave a series of symphony concerts in Moscow and Petrograd. 
He made several tours with his orchestra through. the Russian 
provinces, and was the fìrst to familiarize Russia with many of 
the modern European composers, such as Debussy, Ravel, Florent 
Schmitt, P. Ducas, Roger Ducasse, Fanelly, Elgar and Richard 
Strauss, as well as with the Russians, Scriabin, Stravinsky, 
Prokofieff, and others. 

Koussevitzky was in the habit of making a bi-annual tour of 
the central provinces of his native country, chartering one of the 
largest Volga steamers, and using the 2,325 miles extent of the 
river as a highway. By this means he was able to transport with 
ease and celerity a large party of friends as well as his permanent 
private orchestra of eighty-five musicians, and a full-size concert 
grand piano. Stopping at the principal cities on the banks of the 
river, he gave a series of concerts at nominal fees, thus bringing 
a breath of the civilized world to the teeming multitudes in that 
region which covers about 583,000 square miles. In the course of 
these crusades, Koussevitzky discovered and encouraged many 
persons whose talents would otherwise have remained unknown. 

The last occasion on which he was permitted to make his 
musical tour on the Volga was in May 1914, the company of 



guests and musicians totaling over 100 persons, ancl the itinerary 
embracing the principal towns of the Volga River from Jaroslavl 
to Astrakhan. 

The principal aim of all -the musical organizations and activi- 
ties of Koussevitzky in Russia was partly to struggle against 
routine in the understanding and interpretation of the classical 
music. Debussy was twice invited by him to come to Russia and 
to conduct his works in Petrograd and Moscow. 

Koussevitzky used to organize special festivals of Beethoven, 
Bach, Tschaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakoff, and others, conducted by 
himself in the two capitals of Russia. He was a favorite pupil in 
Arthur Nikisch's classes in conducting. Koussevitzky was un- 
doubtedly much influenced by Nikisch, for he resembles him a 
great deal in the manner of his conducting, being like him, both 
lyric and romantic. 

The great friendship which united Koussevitzky to the com- 
poser Alexander Scriabin is well known. The composer himself 
estimated Koussevitzky as the best interpreter of his orchestral 
works. He was the first to perform in Russia Scriabin's poem 
"Prometheus" and the famous "Poème de l'Extase." They had no 
success at the fìrst performance; but their present great popu- 
larity is due to many repetitions at the concerts of Koussevitzky. 

The musical publication L'Èdìtion Russe cle Musìque, organ- 
ized by Koussevitzky and his wife Natalie, in 1909, simultane- 
ously with his concerts, had as its principal aim the publishing 
of the works of talented young Russian composers thus intro- 
ducing them and saving them from exploitation. L'Èdition 
Musicale Russe published the most important works of such 
Russian composers as Igor Stravinsky, Serge Rachmaninoff, Alex- 
ander Scriabin, Serge Prokofìeff, Alexander Gretchaninoff, and 
others. Rimsky-Korsakoff's Treatise on Orchestration, known 
by musicians throughout the world, was also published by them. 
Their activities are now being continued in Paris. 

Koussevitzky came to Western Europe in 1920. He organized 
concerts in Paris with the same aim that he had done in Russia. 
Each year he gave a spring and autumn series of four concerts. 
These have become a leading feature of musical life in Paris, 
owing to the freshness and novelty of their programes and the 
new spirit which inspires them. During the four years of their 
existence Koussevitzky discovered to his audiences not only many 
works of Russian composers quite unknown in Europe before 
him, but also those of the young composers of the modern French, 
English, and Italian schools, and even some quite unfamiliar 
classical and ancient works. 

Koussevitzky has given over sixty novelties in Paris, embrac- 

134 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ing almost the entire list of the French, Russian, and Italian 
moderns, as well as many revivals. 

During the same years, he conducted concerts in London, 
Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Barcelona, 
Madrid, Rome, Berlin, Warsaw and Mantes. At Barcelona, 
Lisbon, and Paris, he gave Rimsky-Korsakoff's "The Snow 
Maiden," Moussorgsky's "Boris Godounoff" and "Khovanschina," 
Borodine's "Prince Igor," Tschaikovsky's "Queen of Spades," and 

The following tribute was one of a great many paid him in 
England: "It used to be said" (we quote the Westminster Gazette) 
"that Nikisch mesmerised his players. In Koussevitzky's case 
one might rather put it that he electrifies them — and with them 
the audiences too." 

In Autumn of 1924 Koussevitzk was nominated as conductor 
to the Boston Symphony to replace Pierre Monteux. 

During the season of 1924-5 he gave, for the fìrst time in 
America, Moussorgsky's "Tableaux d'une Exposition," especially 
orchestrated for the conductor by Maurice Ravel; Arthur Honeg- 
ger's "Pacifique 231," and Serge Prokofieff's suite "Scythe," which 
he had previously given in Paris. He also brough with him Igor 
Stravinsky's new piano concerto. 

Koussevitsky's success in America was so great that the Boston 
Symphony Orchestra re-engaged him for another five years long 
before his first contract had expired. 

His graying hair, his well-knit figure, his fìrm decisive jaw 
seems to mark him, not as an artistic radical, but as a conservative. 
He is both of these. Therein perhaps lies the secret of his success. 
He has a somewhat cynical sense of humor, which he is tactful 
enough to suppress when the occasion demands. As he talks there 
is in the inflection of his voice, in the whimsical drooping of his 
eyes, a suggestion of the dynamic personality which he reveals on 
the stand. 

As the bass-viol virtuoso, Koussevitzky developed an extraordi- 
nary facility; he not only became the double-bass soloist of the 
orchestra of the Imperial Opera at Moscow, but succeeded his 
teacher as professor of that instrument at the Conservatory. For 
ten years he toured Russia and Western Europe as a contra-bass 
virtuoso, and composed a number of works for that instrument, 
including a concerto, that are now part of the repertory of every 

On February 24, 1926, Kossevitzky appeared as soloist on the 
contra-bass at a concert of Brown University in Providence, Long 
Island, playing Handel's "Ombra mai fu" ; and the honorary degree 
of Doctor of Music was conferred upon him. 

Conductors 135 


One of the most conspicuous fìgures in the fìeld of national Jewish 
music in New York and its environments is Leo Low, who was 
born in Volkovisk, Poland, on January 15, 1878. A child of middle- 
class-parents, he received up to the age 
of thirteen a strict Jewish education. 
Low showed his musical predilection at 
the age of eight, when he used to sing in 
the choir of his father, a cantor. When 
twelve yèars old, he appeared a "child- 
cantor," and attracted much attention. 
Later followed a period of travelling 
with journeying cantors through Lithu- 
ania and Ukrainia. When the boy was 
fifteen years of age, and his voice 
changed, he became conductor of a choir 
in his home town. 

Shortly afterwards, Low entered the 
Warsaw Conservatory where he was 
graduated in 1899. He subsequently became leader of a military 
band, and the conductor of Yiddish and Russia operettas. He was 
also engaged as conductor at the big synagogue in Vilna under the 
famous cantor Sirota, with whom he remained for fìve years. 

Shortly afterwards, Low went to Bukharest, Roumania, where 
he became music director of a reformed Jewish temple. There he 
directed the chorus and also wrote several compositions for voices 
as well as for the organ. He made the acquaintance of a Spanish 
Jew, Cohen-Linary, with whom he again studied harmony, and at 
that time he composed some music for psalms and several songs. 

In 1908 Low returned to Warsaw, where he became music 
director of the Tolmatzker Synagogue, remaining in that capacity 
for twelve years. During that time he was also conductor of the 
Warsaw "Hazomor," a choral body interested in the performance 
of oratorio and classic choruses. 

In 1913 he undertook a concert-tour through the United States 
with the cantor Sirota. At that time, Low trained a chorus and 
gave concerts in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, ancl other 
centers, drawing a large attendance, and arousing enthusiasm 
among Jewish music lovers. Returning to Warsaw, he lived there 
through the turbulent period of the war. In January of 1920, he 
again came to America with the well-known cantor, Hershman, and 
finally settled here. He then composed a Jewish operetta, "The 
Musical Village," which had a short run. In 1921 he returned to 

136 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

his former activities, becoming conductor of the Paterson (New 
Jersey) chorus, which he brought to a high degree of perfection. 
He later organized the Nazionaler Arbeiter Verband Chor in New 
York, of which he is to this day conductor. With this he gave a 
number of important concerts, with such soloists as Joseph 
Schwarz, Mischa Levitzki, Marie Sundelius, Mischa Elman, and 
others. At the same time he assumed the musical direction of the 
Brooklyn Beth-El Synagogue. 


Although still a very young' man, David Mendoza occupies a 
place in the fìeld of motion picture music together with Finston, 
Rapee, Pilzer, and Riesenfeld. The orchestra he conducts is the 
full-sized symphony orchestra of the 
Capitol Theatre in New York which is 
one of the largest of its kind in the world. 

Mendoza was born in New York City 
on March 13, 1894. His father was a 
government clerk. At the age of seven, 
David began studying the violin with 
Kneisel, and later composition with 
Percy Goetschius. He twice interrupted 
his musical studies in order to work for 
the degree of Doctor of Medicine, but the 
stronger love conquered, and at the age 
of seventeen he determined to devote 
himself entirely to music. 

During his professional career, Men- 
doza was with the Russian Symphony under Modest Altschuler for 
two years, and later with the New York Symphony as fìrst violinist. 
After leaving these two well-known orchestras, he entered the 
motion-picture fìeld, first appearing at the Rialto Theatre. He then 
became concert master of the Rivoli Theatre, where he displayed 
exceptional talent in the selection and presentation of the musical 
programs. He next became musical director at Pox's Academy 
Theater, and remained there for one year, after which he was 
brought to the Capitol Theater by Mr. Rothapfel. He has made 
many friends at this palatial house of entertainment which has 
become a national institution. 

Mendoza is now recognized as one of the ablest musical pro- 
ducers for motion pictures. His adaptations, arrangements and 
compositions for such pictures as the "Big Parade," "The Merry 
Widow," "Greed," "Ben Hur," "Mare Nostrum," ancì others, are 
both colorful and interesting. 




This eminent French conductor should be given credit primarily 
for his high courage in popularizing during the early days of his 
career, the works of the French and Russian modernists, who were 
in France at least, taboo. With this view 
he founded at the Paris Casino in Feb- 
ruary of 1914, the Sociètè des Concerts 
Populaires, with which his name is still 
connected. There he gave the fìrst full 
concert performance of Stravinsky's 
"Petroushka," and during April 1914, 
had the courage to include in his program 
the same composer's "Sacrè du Prin- 
temps," since made famous and even 

Pierre Monteux was born in Paris on 
April 4, 1875. He studied at the Paris 
Conservatoire (solfeggio and harmony 
with Lavignac, counterpoint with Gene- 
puen, and violin with Berthalier) , and won the fìrst prize in violin 
playing in 1896. As early as 1894 he made his dèbut in a quartet. 
On being graduated from the Conservatoire, he commenced his 
career as violinist in the orchestras of the Opèra Comique and the 
Concerts Colonne, where he was second leader of the violin section. 

From 1912 to 1914 he won fame as conductor of the Diaghilev 
Ballet Russe, where he conducted Ravel's "Daphnis and Chloe," 
Debussy's "Jeux d'Eaux" and Stravinsky's "Sacrè du Printemps" 

Beginning with 1913 and continuing for several seasons, 
Monteux conducted at the Paris Grand Opera House Theatre des 
Champs-Elysèes, Chàtelet, and Odeon. During that time he was 
also conductor at Convent Garden and Drury Lane, London, and 
in Berlin, Vienna, Budapest, and other musical centers. He con- 
ducted a tour of the Russian Ballet in the United States, and the 
concerts of the Civic Orchestra in New York. 

During the World War, Monteux was recalled from the front 
and sent to the United States to carry on musical propaganda in 
favor of the Allied nations. He has since definitely settled in this 
country and, until his resignation in 1924, conducted the Boston 
Symphony Orchestra in Boston and in New York. His programs 
are models of eclecticism, and his interpretations are noted for 
their delicacy of detail — those of Debussy especially benefitting by 
his fìne gradation of nuances and sensitive appreciation of the 

138 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

value of each group of instruments. During the season of 1917-18 
Monteux also conducted at the Metropolitan Opera House in 
New York. 

He has also given the premieres of Ravel's "Valses Nobles et 
Sentimentales," Roger-Ducasse's "Le Jolie Jeu du Furet," and 
many others. 

During past seasons Monteux conducted at the Amsterdam 
Concertgebouw, and in the interval directed concerts in Leningrad, 
Moscow, Stockholm, and Berlin. 

in ;9U) he married Germaine Benedictus. 


"Tiie soul of a performance of grand opera is the conductor." 
The man who stands with uplifted baton in the orchestra pit is 
the representative of the composer. In the orchestra pit, the true 
conductor, directing the entire perform- 
ance, lives not one role, but all of them, 
for he must live them all to express with 
the music of his orchestra all that moved 
the composer of the score. 

Giorgio Polacco, present conductor 
of the Chicago Civic Opera Company, is 
accepted throughout the world as a mu- 
sician and conductor, who is as gifted 
an artist as the age ha's produced. The 
story of his life, expended in the cause 
of art, is full of achievement. 

Polacco was born in Venice on April 
12, 1875. He spent his youth in a com- 
fortable home, studying literature and 
philosophy and languages, according to the ideas of his father. 
But he was born with an inordinate craving for music. He dfd not 
know the meaning of moderation in its study. 

Even as a youngster, Polacco displayed the artistic gifts that 
later made him one of the great fìgures of the musical world. 
When his father died, Giorgio became the head of the family. He 
decided to put his musical education to professional use. Wealthy 
relatives would have given aid, but young Polacco refused. 

At the age of eighteen the young musician accepted a position 
in London with an operatic company. There, in the Shaftesbury 
Theatre in 1892, and with an operatic ease that would do credit 
to any of the principal opera theatres of today, the eighteen-year- 



old boy conducted a performance of "Orpheus" that lived long in 
the memory of many who heard it. 

When he was only twenty, he was sent for to conduct at the 
Lyric International Theatre in Milan. 

His musical career was a series of triumphs. He served 
seventeen seasons at Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro where he 
became a popular idol. Between opera seasons he went home to 
Italy to his mother. 

After more than a decade and a half of opera in Brazil and the 
Argentine, he took up his principal operatic labors in Italy. 
Polacco came to be known as a conductor who was always being 
asked to conduct fìrst performances outside the countries where 
those operas were being composed and produced. He was the fìrst 
man to conduct "Louise" outside of Paris as well as "Peleas and 
Melisande" and others too numerous to mention. 

In 1904, Porfirio Diaz, President of Mexico, and lover of the 
arts, charged one of his ministers with the duty of obtaining 
talent for the opera in Mexico City. The minister invited Giorgio 
Polacco to come to Mexico with him. Polacco accepted, taking to 
his Mexico company a modestly paid Italian singer whom he 
regarded as a real artist. This artist was Tetrazzini ! 

In his youth Polacco became fluent in French, German, 
Russian, and Italian. In Brazil and the Argentine he learnt 
Spanish and Portuguese. One day in Mexico City it was decided 
to give a presentation of "The Love of Three Kings." Tlie 
conductor's score was in Italian. The company required a Spanish 
translation. Conductor Polacco sat up all night, and when day 
broke a full translation into Spanish was ready. In 1910, Puccini 
produced his "Girl of the Golden West" at Brescia, with Polacco 
conducting. The production was later brought to the United 
States, and staged by Henry W. Savage. In the Fall of 1911, 
Arturo Toscanini recommended to the Metropolitan management 
that Maestro Polacco be added to the conductors' list. Polacco 
went to the Metropolitan without a contract, expecting to remain 
a month or two. He remained there six years. When Toscanini 
left in 1915, Polacco became senior conductor for three years. 
At the expiration of that period, he joined the Chicago Civic 
Opera Company on the invitation of Cleofonte Campanini, then 
director of the Chicago organization. He is now their chief 
musical director. 

Giorgio Polacco married Edith Mason, the well-known singer. 

140 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Iiace 


HUGO Riesenfeld engages in an exceptionally varied and interest- 
ing routine of activities as managing director of three Broadway 
picture theatres in New York. He popularizes classic compositions, 
arranges popular melodies symphonic- 
ally and presents them as classical jazz, 
composes melodies and symphonies, cre- 
ates fìlm opera by featuring motion 
pictures of opera to match the music of 
opera, writes original settings for pic- 
tures and conducts his orchestras at the 
metropolitan theatres. "Just a gentle- 
màn of leisure," is the way he describes 

Hugo Riesenfeld was born in Vienna 
on January 26, 1879, and was gradu- 
ated with honors from the Vienna Con- 
servatory, after which he fìlled a long 
engagement in the Vienna Opera House 
as concert master and conductor of ballets. In the course of an 
extremely active and intense life, Riesenfeld played under such 
musical colossi as Mahler, Schuch, Hans Richter, Gòricke, Safo- 
noff, Wiengartner, Hugo Breschan and many others. 

Riesenfeld's fìrst violin teacher was Bachrach. He also studied 
with Griinn and Rose. Robert Fuchs and Grodener taught him 
composition. In the year 1906 Riesenfeld came to America as 
concert master of Oscar Hammerstein's Manhattan Opera House. 
Later he worked with the Klaw and Erlanger Company as music 
director and conductor of comic opera productions. 

Riesenfeld composed and directed his own operetta "The Merry 
Martyr," produced with success by Klaw and Erlanger in 1913. 
When the Century Opera Company opened with grand opera in 
English, Hugo Riesenfeld was secured as its guiding musical 

In April of 1916, he became the musical director and conductor 
of the Rialto Theatre Orchestra, New York. When the Rivoli 
opened in 1917, and the Criterion in April of 1920, they were also 
placed under his direction. 

Carl Engel, chief of the music division of the Library of 
Congress in Washington, D.C., writing of classical jazz in the 
London Chesterìan, declares : "It is nothing else than some of our 
excellent popular tunes of recent vintage, infused with all the 
sparkle of a symphony orchestra bottled up in a masterful instru- 



mentation, enriched with a bouquet unmistakably American, 
irresistible, intoxicating." 

The Riesenfeld standards have become the standards of the 
motion picture theatres of America. His entertainment scheme 
has been copied from coast to coast. His orchestral settings to 
such pictures as "The Covered Wagon," "The Ten Command- 
ments," "Madame Sans-Gene," and particularly "The Volga 
Boatman," which had its world premiere in May of 1926 in 
New York, have been applauded by millions. 

As a composer Riesenfeld has to his credit, aside from the 
operetta already mentioned, such successes as "Betty Be Good," a 
musical comedy ; "Overture in Romantic Style" ; songs ; and 
innumerable small works. 


This brilliant young Hungarian conductor, though still in his 
thirties, is regarded as one o'f the foremost wielders of the 
baton. His rapid rise to musical eminence in Europe won him the 
conductorship of the Cincinnati Orches- 
tra in 1922. 

He was born in Budapest, Hungary 
on December 19, 1888. His parents 
were ambitious for his development. 
During his youth he carried on many 
studies at the same time, and always 
took first honors in his classes. During 
high school days he studied piano, com- 
position, and English besides the regular 
course. At the age of sixteen he was 
graduated simultaneously from high 
school ancì from the National Academy 
of Music of Budapest. His father had 
planned for him the career of a lawyer, 
and so insisted that the young man attend university. The boy, 
however, became more and more interested in music, and conse- 
quently more and more neglectful of his law studies. A year 
later, his father died. Young Reiner abandoned himself to the 
call of music and left the university. 

Through the good advice, help, and influence of a boyhood 
friend, Leo Weiner, Fritz had been admitted to the National 
Academy of Music. He played tympani in the orchestra of the 
National Academy of Music, which is one of the most famous 
musical institutes of the world. During those years the great 
Hubay was conductor, and young Reiner was much loved by the 

142 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

master. His fìrst professional experience as conductor, when he 
was but nineteen, was as assistant to the Budapest Opera Com- 
ique. This was followed by an appointment as principal director 
at the National Theatre in Laibach, Jugo-Slavia, and this led to 
the post of principal director of the People's Opera in Budapest. 
The fame of the young conductor began to spread, and the opera 
management of Dresden, which boasts one of the most celebrated 
opera houses in the world, made him an offer. It resulted in his 
going to Dresden, where he remained for eight years as first 
conductor of the Royal Opera, succeeding in this capacity the 
famous Ernst von Schuch. 

During these years he was frequently invited to be guest 
conductor in various cities such as Berlin, Hamburg and Vienna. 
Then came the World War. Reiner's position was a lifetime one. 
At the beginning the beautiful prospect of a glorious future with 
countless honors glowed before him. The war brought ruin and 
revolution to the country. The whole order of affairs was changed. 
When an invitation came 'to him from the Teatro Constanzi, 
Rome, he accepted immediately. There he remained during the 
winter season of 1921, conducting Wagnerian operas, as well as 
concerts at the Augusteo. While in Rome he received an invi- 
tation to conduct at the Teatro Liceo of Barcelona, Spain, a 
number of Wagnerian Operas in the Spring of 1922. While in 
Barcelona, his engagement was extended to include some produc- 
tions in Palma, the principal city of the Island of Majorca. 
Meanwhile, his wife, Mme Bertha Gardini Reiner, who had been 
through a great strain during the previous war time years in 
Germany, singing and teaching, remained for a rest at her villa 
in Italy. One day there came to her a cable from a friend in 
Zurich saying that the President of the Cincinnati Symphony 
Orchestra Association was desirous of offering Reiner the position 
of concluctor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Mme Reiner 
immediately cabled her husband, but when the message reached 
him, it was no longer intelligible. Unable to make it out, he replied 
that Mme Reiner should use her own judgment in the matter, 
whatever it might be. She accepted. 

This happened in March of 1922. In April Reiner returned to 
Rome to conduct a final engagemenf. Then he and his wife started 
on their long journey for their new position, home, and country. 
They went fìrst to Dresden, and then sailed from Hamburg, on 
September 16, on the steamer "Caronia," reaching New York, 
September 26, and arriving in Cincinnati on October lst. 

Reiner had come to Cincinnati on a one-year contract, but 
long before its termination he was oft'ered a four-year contract, 
which he accepted. Under his commanding baton this organiza- 
tion has reached a high degree of perfection. 



During the Summer months of 1924 and 1925, Fritz Reiner 
conducted at the New York Philharmonic concerts in the series of 
the Lewisohn Stadium open air concerts, playing for huge audi- 
ences. In January of 1926, he brought his Cincinnati orchestra 
for a series of concerts in New York, eliciting high praise from 
the metropolitan press for his splendid leadership and musician- 
ship, for according to one New York critic "Reiner delicately 
conjures forth from his favorite compositions not their brazen 
defiance, but whatsoever they have of melody, plaintive, dreamy 
or joyous. ,, 

He also conducted several concerts with the Philadelphia and 
the New York Philharmonic Orchestras. 

Reiner also devotes some of his time to composition, and has 
written a string quartet, many songs, and suncìry pieces. 


ERNO Rapee, conductor, who has established for himself a unique 
reputation in the field of motion picture re-scoring, synchronizing, 
and conducting, was born in Budapest, on June 4, 1891. He was 
a pupil of the National Academy there, 
and also of Emil Sauer, the distinguished 
Viennese pianist. He acted in 1912 as 
assistant to Ernest von Schuch, the well- 
known Dresden conductor. He is an ex- 
cellent piano virtuoso, and has appeared 
in Vienna, Berlin, and Budapest with the 
Philharmonic Orchestra. Since coming 
to this country in 1912, Rapee has been 
accompanist to such artists as David 
Hochstein, Maurice Dambois, and others. 
He also enjoys the distinction of being 
the fìrst pianist to appear with the Letz 

For two years he was musical di- 
rector of the Rivoli Theatre in New York City, and for four years 
the musical director of the Capitol Theatre, which maintains a 
full-sized symphony orchestra. He is considered one of the most 
talented of the younger conductors. 

After being active for two years as musical director of the 
U. F. A. Theatre in Berlin, he returned in 1926 to New York City, 
where he is musical director of the world's largest and hnest theatre 
— the Roxy. His talents as conductor give his musical representa- 
tions here a dignity not found in theatres of its kind. 

144 Famous Musicìans of a Wandering Race 


Sir Landon Ronald, the famous English conductor, is the son of 
Henry Russell, the well-known teacher of singing and song com- 
poser. He was born on June 7, 1873, in London, and educated at 
St. Marylebone, All Souls' Grammar 
School, and Margate College. 

He has described his childhood days 
in Variations on a Personal Theme: 

"From the age of four or fìve I gave 
such obvious signs of being exception- 
ally musical that never for an instant 
was the possibility entertained of my 
ever becoming anything but a musician. 
My dear mother not only gave me my 
fìrst pianof orte lessons, but in every way 
guided and helped me in my studies, se- 
lecting my masters, and even standing 
over me with infìnite patience to see that 
I performed my allotted tasks. Oddly 
enough, I was a lazy boy and would always shirk work if I could. 

"This is all the more curious when it is remembered that from 
the age of seventeen I have been an indefatigable worker and 
that today I never give up unless ill-health compels me to do so. 
Everything in music came remarkably easy to me, especially writ- 
ing songs. I was trained, however, to become a pianist and violin- 
ist, but heartily disliked having to practice either instrument. At 
the age of fourteen I wanted to give up both in order to become a 
conductor, a composer and a musical critic, and wrote this fact to 
my mother.. . . . She met me with a very definite refusal, partly 
because she quite rightly deemed my desire as a mere excuse to 
escape the necessary work that all pianists and violinists have to 
do. To those two instruments I was therefore kept, and after 
some six months' private tuition under Lady Thompson for com- 
position, Franklin Taylor for pianoforte, and Henry Holmes for 
violin, I was entered as a student at the Royal College of Music." 

At the College he studied composition under Sir Hubert Parry ; 
counterpoint under Sir Frederick Bridge. He also studied imder 
Sir Charles Villiers Stanford and Sir W. Parrat. 

He obtained his fìrst professional engagement in 1890, soon 
after leaving the College. He played the piano part in "L'Enfant 
Prodigue" at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London. This post 
he obtained in a competition with numerous other applicants. He 
accompanied the famous musical play over 500 times all through 
England and Scotland. He was then engaged by William Greet to 
tour as conductor of comic operas. 



At the age of eighteen he met Mancinelli, the well-known con- 
ductor at the Covent Garden Opera House, and through his influ- 
ence, as well as his own merit, was appointed "maestro al piano" 
at the Italian Opera, Covent Garden, under Sir Augustus Harris. 
The latter sent him on a six months' tour as one of the conductors 
of a company including the Sisters Rowogli, David Bispham, Rich- 
ard Green, Lucile Hill, and about twenty other artists, together 
with a large chorus and orchestra. 

In 1893 he was introduced to Melba, who required a maestro 
to study "Manon" with her. Since that time he has invariably 
joined her in her tours as conductor and accompanist. 

It will be of interest to quote a f ew words of his own in regard 
to his meeting with the great Melba: 

"My friendship with this great singer dates back many, many 
years, and I can scarcely think of one milestone in my career with- 
out the name of Melba being in some way identified with it. As a 
matter of fact my fìrst meeting with her was actually on Covent 
Garden stage, when I was a boy of nineteen, doing all the dirty 
(musical) work there was to do! Why she ever took the slightest 
notice of me, or troubled to ask my name of Arthur Collins, will 
ever remain a mystery to me. 

"It came about that one memorable night when I was in my 
usual place (the 'prompt corner' on the stage, vocal score in hand) 
during a performance of 'Faust.' In walked Melba. She sat on a 
wooden bench, looked about her, saw me, glanced quickly at me, 
turned her head, then looked me up and down, and asked in a very 
direct fashion, 'And who on earth are you?' I went hot and cold, 
red and white, tried to stammer out that I was a sort of maid-of- 
all-work, but a humble worshipper of hers, when Arthur Collins, 
the director, bounced in and said: 'This is the young fellow I 
spoke to you about, madame. I want you to give him a chance.' 

"A few days later I was called to visit the great Diva . . . 
I was very nervous when I was eventually ushered into Melba's 
sitting-room and found her waiting for me. At the end of the 
practice on 'Manon,' Melba asked me a few questions about myself, 
and paid me some charming compliments about my tonch on the 
piano and the patience I had shown. 

"I told her that my ambition was to become a great conductor 
and accompanist, and she took me seriously and encouraged me. 
Suddenly it occurred to her to ask me to play one or two of her 
famous arias for her. She became very enthusiastic and went into 
minute details as to what she wanted here and what she wished 
there, seating herself at the piano and actually showing me. As I 
left her, she uttered a single sentence, which probably meant little 
enough to her, but everything to me in the world: 'Remember, that 
for the future you are Melba's sole accompanist.' 

146 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

"And for something like fourteen consecutive years she kept 
to her word and had no one else to play for her." 

After his return from America, he appeared twice before 
Queen Victoria, and in 1898 was conductor at the Lyric Theatre. 
He also appeared at Balmoral and Windsor before King Edward 
and Queen Alexandria. 

From 1897 on he became Tosti's helper at court functions, 
and from 1898 to 1902, besides being conductor at the Lyric, he 
also conducted the Sunday concerts at Blackpool. In 1907-08, he 
was guest conduclor with the London Symphony, as well as with 
other orchestras on the Continent: Amsterdam, Berlin, Vienna, 
Leipzig, Bremen, and at the Academy of St. Cecilia in Rome, where 
he introduced Elgar's First Symphony for the fìrst time in Italy. 

In November of 1910 Sir Ronald was elected Principal of the 
Guildhall School of Music, London. He has conducted the Royal 
Albert Hall Orchestra (formerly the New Symphony) since 1908, 
bringing it to a high point of excellence; also the Promenade Con- 
certs in Birmingham. 

He has also conducted the Liverpool Philharmonic Concerts, 
the Manchester Halle Concerts, the Scottish Orchestra, and others. 

At times he has served as critic for London papers. He was 
musical editor of Artist in 1902 and of Onlooker in 1903. 

Among other works, he has written the symphonic poem, "A 
Winter's Night," the overture "A Birthday," the ballets "Britan- 
nia's Realm" (1902) and "Entente Cordiale" (1904), an operetta, 
dramatic scenes "Adonais" and "Lament of Shah Jehan" (violin 
and orchestra), incidental music to "The Garden of Allah," about 
300 songs, including additional numbers to "Little Miss Nobody," 
"The Silver Slipper," "Floradora," 'TAmour Mocillè," and many 
piano pieces. He also published, in 1924, an autobiographical book, 
Variations on a Personal Thenie. 

He was knighted in 1910. He married Miss Mimi Ettlinger, 
of Frankfort-on-Main. 

Of his musical likes and dislikes, he says : 

"I would like to make it quite clear that I have no grievances — 
no axe to grind. I belong to no clique — I have no prejudices for 
or against any particular school, and thank God, I am not jealous 
or envious of a single member of my profession. There is room 
for us all in this world, and perhaps life might be made a little 
more pleasant for many of us if we took a little more interest in 
each other's work and were not quite so absorbed in our own." 

His father, Henry Russell (1812-1900), wrote "A Life on the 
Ocean Wave," "Woodman, Spare That Tree," "Cheer, Boys, Cheer," 
and other popular songs, numbering more than 800 in' all. He 
played organ in Rochester, N. Y., wrote l'Amico dei Cantanti and 
a book on singing. 

Henry Russell was a pupil of Rossini in Naples. 




Walter Henry Rothwell was born on September 22, 1872, in 
London, of an English father and an Aiistrian mother. He was 
taken to Vienna when a very young child. His musical talent soon 
manifested itself too clearly to be over- 
looked, and his mother, an excellent 
pianist and a pupil of Wieck (who was 
the father of Clara Schumann), gave the 
boy instruction. He made such rapid 
progress that at he age of nine he en- 
tered the Royal Academy of Music in 
Vienna, where his piano teachers were 
Rauch, Schonner and Professor Julius 
Epstein. Counterpoint and composition 
he studied with Hans Krenn, Robert 
Fuchs and Anton Bruckner. 

Upon graduating from the Royal 
Academy with highest honors — the fìrst 
prize and the gold medal — at the agè of 
fifteen, Rothwell continued to study piano and composition with 
Julius Epstein and Nathan Fuchs in Vienna, and then went to 
Munich, where he completed his studies in composition and modern 
orchestration with the late Ludwig Thuille and Dr. Max von Schil- 
lings, noted authorities in these branches of music. 

In his seventeenth year, Rothwell became widely known as a 
pianist throughout Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. He was 
engaged as teacher of piano for several members of the royal f amily 
of Austria, and became the vogue amcng the members of the Aus- 
trian aristocracy. 

At this time, notwithstanding his extreme youth, he coached 
many artists of the Royal Opera of Vienna and also prepared 
artists for the Bayreuth Festivals. It was while he was rehears- 
ing one of the Wagner operas that the famous impresario Pollini, 
of the Hamburg Opera, heard him and persuaded him to abandon 
the concert fìeld and become conductor of the Hamburg Opera, 
under the leadership of the distinguished Gustav Mahler, who was 
chief conductor of the institution. To Gustav Mahler Rothwell 
acknowledges a deep debt of gratitude, as that great master took 
an immediate interest in the young musician, and taught him every 
detail of the technique of conducting. Although for years he had 
been in close contact with the opera in Vienna and its wonderful 
orchestra, Rothwell's insight into the works of the great masters 
was due to Mahler's genius and personality. 

148 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Two years later, having become a skilled conductor, he left 
Hamburg to act as fìrst conductor in such cities as Vienna, Bres- 
lau, Rostock, and Linz. After several years of activity in Ger- 
many, he was invited to conduct "Fidelio," "Lohengrin," and "Die 
Freischutz" at the Royal Opera in Amsterdam, Holland. After 
a sensational success he was appointed general musical director of 
that institution. While there he received an offer from Colonel 
Henry W. Savage, which resulted in his fìrst visit to America to 
conduct the English performances of "Parsifal" in 1904-05, when 
it was given in all the large cities of the United States — a total 
of 114 performances of this opera under his baton. This tour was 
so successful that he was re-engaged for a similar tour of Puc- 
cini's "Madame Butterfly," which had its fìrst American presenta- 
tion in English at Washington, under Rothwell. The opera was 
produced at the Metropolitan Opera House later in the same sea- 
son. Its success was so great that a second season was made 
possible, and the second year was even more successful than the 

Upon the completion of this engagement, he accepted a fìve- 
year contract to conduct opera at Frankfort-am-Main. He later 
procured his release from the Frankfort operatic conductorship 
and accepted an offer from the St. Paul Symphony Association of 
Minnesota, for after conducting opera for many years, he much 
preferred symphonic to operatic work. 

Rothwell has been conductor of the St. Paul Symphony Or- 
chestra for seven years and has raised it to a high degree of excel- 
lence. His contract had another two years to run when, at the 
outbreak of the World War, the Symphony Association found it 
impossible to raise the necessary guarantee fund, and so the or- 
ganization was disbanded. It was while conducting the St. Paul 
Symphony Orchestra in 1907 that Rothwell inaugurated the fìrst 
Children's Concerts given in America. They were tremendously 
successful and have since been generally introduced in America 
by the various symphony orchestras. 

In 1908 Rothwell married Miss Elizabeth WolfT, dramatic so- 
prano, who came to America to sing the title role in "Madame 
Butterfly," and who has since appeared in recital on numerous 

In 1915-18 Rothwell centered his activities in New York City, 
where he maintained a studio for artist pupils. His pupils include 
many who have since attained recognition and fame. During this 
period he found the time, hitherto denied him in his more exacting 
engagements, to devote himself to composition. 

Rothwell was not permitted, even during this period of teach- 
ing in New York, completely to lay aside his conducting. During 
the years 1917 and 1918, he served as guest conductor some ten 



times of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Detroit Sym- 
phony Orchestra. 

In the Summer of 1916, Rothwell directed the Civic Orchestral 
Concerts at Madison Square Garden, in New York City, in a 
series of summer concerts, which drew capacity audiences. 

In the Summer of 1919, William Andrews Clark, Jr., decided 
to found the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, and selected 
Rothwell as its permanent conductor, which position he held until 
his death by apoplexy on March 13, 1927. He was driving his car 
in Los Angeles, making for the beach. Evidently he felt the at- 
tack coming, for he shut off his car and coasted to the curb where 
he collapsed over his wheel. A woman driving behind him stopped 
and helped him out of his car, and laid him on the grass where, 
in another minute, he died. 

Rothwell served the highest ideals in art, both as a conductor 
and a composer, in which latter field he was also well known. His 
work in Los Angeles was that of a pioneer and his influence has 
been great in molding and developing the musical taste, not only 
of the community but the surrounding territory as well. The ex- 
cellence of his orchestra was a matter for favorable comment of 
important guest-conductors who led it in the Hollywood Bowl Con- 
certs and it also made possible the fìne performances of the Los 
Angeles Opera Association, with which he was to have conducted 
the first local performance of "Tristan and Isolde." Personally, 
he was unostentatious but sincere, and his untiring efforts brought 
honor to himself and distinction to the organization whose destiny 
he did so much to shape, in making it, in the space of eight years, 
one of the notable orchestral bodies in the country. 

Rothwell composed a piano concerto with orchestral accom- 
paniment; two piano sonatas; incidental music to Maeterlinck's 
"Mort de Tintagiles" for voice and orchestra; a "Bacchanale" to 
a poem by Louis Untermeyer for voice and orchestra; a musical 
setting for voice and orchestra for a cycle of poems by the same 
American poet; two scherzos for orchestra; "Midsummer Night" 
for voice and orchestra (the vocal part was sung by Florence 
Easton with great success) ; and many other songs. 


Aaron PasowsKy, chief conductor of the Moscow "Big Theatre," 
is distinguished as a conductor of opera. Still in his early forties, 
he is considered one of the most significant conductors in Russia 
at the present time. 

150 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Kurt Schindler is widely known for his conductorship of the 
famous Schola Cantorum, the foremost choral organization in the 
United States, which he founded in 1908. The original name of 
this organization until 1910 was the 
MacDowell Club Chorus. No other or- 
ganization of its kind has been known to 
present such a great variety of new or 
forgotten works, singing with style and 
fìnish, as did the Schola Cantorum. 

Kurt Schindler is a master of pro- 
gram building; he has a genius for 
discovering new or forgotten music, for 
which he makes periodical journeys to 
Europe. He is also a great connoisseur 
of folk songs, particularly Russian and 
Spanish, having published Songs of the 
Russian People (1915), and Russian 
Liturgical Songs (with Charles Win- 
fred Douglas, in 1913). From 1912 to 1917 he edited two volumes, 
entitled A Century of Russian Songs, comprising the best examples 
of several Russian schools. 

Schindler is a gifted writer. His two brochures — in essence 
an attack on Moussorgsky and Schònberg — are. well known. 
Schindler has furthermore composed over eighty songs of his own. 

From 1907, he has been almost continuously connected as 
critic and reader with the great New York publishing house of 
G. Schirmer, also making many translations into English from the 
Russian, Finnish, Spanish, German and other languages. He has 
also publìshed an album of songs of the Finnish people. 

This versatile scholar, composer, and conductor of choral 
music, was born in Berlin on February 7, 1882. He studied piano 
under Ansorge, and composition under Bassler, Gernsheim, Thuile 
and L. C. Wolf. He also studied philosophy and history of art 
and music at the Universities of Berlin and Munich. From 1902 
to 1904 he was conductor at the Court Theatres at Stuttgart 
and Wtirzburg, and assistant conductor to Richard Strauss in 

Schindler came to America in 1905 as assistant conductor at 
the New York Metropolitan Opera House. This post he resigned 
in 1908 when he laid the foundation of the present Schola 
Cantorum which is responsible almost to him alone for the high 
place it holds in the musical life of America. Kurt Schindler 
resigned his leadership of the Schola Cantorum in 1926. 



Schindler has been organist and music director of the famous 
New York reformed synagogue, Temple Emanuel, from 1912 to 
1925, when he resigned. He is now musical director of the Musical 
Forum Society, of New York. 


The progress of this young conductor during the past iifteen 
years has been steady. It was therefore not unexpected that he; 
should reveal such distinctive gifts when his symphonic dèbut 
eventually occurred in Philadelphia dur- 
ing the Summer of 1925, conducting the 
Philadelphia Orchestra concerts in Fair- 
mount Park for one week. The skill 
and authority displayed on this occasion 
resulted in an engagement to conduct a 
number of concerts of the Philadelphia 
Philharmonic Orchestra the following 

Alexander Smallens was born in 
Petrograd, in 1889. He came with his 
parents (his mother's maiden name was 
Anna Rosovski; his father's, Pantelei- 
mon Smallens, a well-known physician 
in Petrograd, and head of the Red 
Cross) to New York in 1890, was educated at City College, and 
studied piano and composition (1909) at the Institute of Musical 
Art, where his teachers were Arthur Hochman and Bertha 
Feiringin, in piano; and Percy Goetschius, in composition. 

After being graduated from both places, he departed for 
Paris, studying from 1909 to 1911 at the Paris Conservatoire 
under Pessard, Gedalge, Vidal, and Paul Ducas. We later see 
him as assistant conductor at the Boston Opera House (1911-14) ; 
conductor at the Century Opera Company of New York (1914) ; 
conductor with the Boston Opera Company (1915-17) ; and 
conductor for the Pavlowa Ballets through South America (1917- 
19). Further prestige came through his achievements with the 
Chicago Opera Company (1919-22), where he was also chosen by 
Sergei ProkofiefF to conduct the performance of his "The Love of 
Three Oranges," succeeding the world premiere which the com- 
poser himself conducted. The following year brought oppor- 
tunities for conducting at the Volksoper and Staatsoper in 
Berlin, and at the Royal Opera in Madrid. Since 1923, and upon 
invitation, Smallens has acted as conductor and musical director 
of the Philadelphia Civic Opera Company. 

152 Famous Musicians o/ a Wandering Race 


Joseph Stransky, known to the world as one of the foremost 
living conductors of Wagnerian and symphonic music, was born 
in Humpolec, Bohemia on September 9, 1872. His father, a man 
of strong musical tastes, sang and played 
the violin. The Stransky home had a 
genuine musical atmosphere. Fortun- 
ately for the young Stransky, his father 
took the family to Prague, and there 
personal contact with such men as Fi- 
bich and Dvoràk fanned the flame of 
the boy's musical predilections. 

Stransky was educated in the Uni- 
versities of Prague, Vienna, and Leipzig, 
and received a medical degree in 1896. 
The great Dvoràk was perhaps the fìrst 
to discover young Stransky's ability for 
leadership. Smetana also became inter- 
ested in him. He studied under Jadas- 
sohn in Leipzig, and under Robert Fuchs and Bruckner in Vienna; 

In December of 1898, Stransky made his first appearance, 
conducting "Die Walkure" with eminent success. In Hamburg 
he has had to conduct 164 operas in one season alone, not to 
mention frequent symphonic concerts. Following his fìrst engage- 
ment, Stransky served for five years at Prague, and for seven at 
Hamburg, both as symphony and opera conductor, and for two 
years led the Bluthner Orchestra in Berlin. 

Stransky was a close friend of Gustave Mahler. "Your letter 
affords me great pleasure. You have hit the nail on the head in 
all you have written regarding my work, while concerning the 
character of my art, you have made the most appropriate and 
discriminating comment that has yet reached me. As Mozart has 
been called, perhaps rightly, the Singer of Love, so I might be 
given the title the Singer of Nature. From childhood, nature has 
been to me my all in all. It delights me to fìnd at last some one 
to whom my music says something and means something. I had 
almost despaired of it." This was written by Gustav Mahler in 
acknowledgment of a note of appreciation sent to him by Stransky 
after a performance of Mahler's "First Symphony" in Prague. 

In November of 1911, Stransky conducted his fìrst concert 
with the Philharmonic Orchestra, in New York. There was a 
large audience, among whom were many musicians of note. His 
success was immediate. It must be born in mind that Stransky 



was invited by the New York Philharmonic to succeed the great 
Mahler. This post Stransky filled with great credit to himself 
and to the orchestra for fully twelve years. He resigned in 1923, 
when he became the head of the State Symphony Orchestra, also 
of New York. 

Stransky was chief conductor of the Wagnerian Opera Com- 
pany during its American tour in 1923-4. While still conductor of 
the New York Philharmonic, he undertook many tours with this 
orchestra, and everywhere elicited the highest possible praise from 
public and press. A Boston newspaper said of his conducting : "He 
seems to be a man of authority and taste, a fìery nature. 

"Stransky has won a great triumph in his own right." 

Stransky composed "Symphonic Songs," for medium voice and 
full orchestra (1913) ; Songs (published in 1896 and 1908) ; and 
an opera. 


ONE of the rising musical stars on the horizon in the United 
States, South America and Europe is Vladimir Shavitch who was 
born in South America, on July 20, 1888, of Russian parents. 

At the age of five he began to study 
violin. Later he turned to the piano 
with such seriousness of purpose as to 
be graduated from the Berlin classes of 
Busoni and Godowski while very young. 
A brilliant career as concert pianist was 
prophesied for him. He was only seven- 
teen when he made his successful dèbut 
as a pianist in Berlin. 

In 1908 Shavitch became a member 
of the faculty of the Institute of Musical 
Art in New York, a post he resigned in 
order to resume concertizing in Europe. 
Meanwhile, he held a professorship in 
the Stern Conservatory in Berlin. 
The ambition to conduct was early revealed in Shavitch, who 
sought for an opportunity to signalize himself in that capacity. 
It came m assisting Sehònberg in the production of his "Pierrot 
Lunaire," and as second conductor of the Russian Ballet under 
Oscar Fried. The war interrupted his progress, and he returned 
to the United States, where new opportunities began to present 
themselves. He made a deep impression when he directed a 

154 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Spring festival at a Greek Theatre at Berkeley, Calif orriia, in 1920, 
and since then he has actecl as conductor in various orchestras. 

From 1921 to 1923 he conducted the Montevideo Symphony 
Orchestra in Uruguay, and afterwards with great success in 
Berlin, Dresden, Leipzig, and other places. 

It was during the season of 1923-24, when the writer of this 
book was leading 'cellist in the Rochester Eastman Theatre and 
the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, that Shavitch shared the 
season's program with Eugene Goossens and Albert Coates. Sha- 
vitch revealed himself during that period a conductor of great 
temperament and an energetic leader. In my memory is partic- 
ularly f resh his conducting of Tschaikovsky's "Fourth Symphony," 
to the performance of which he gave much fìre and expressiyeness 
and the genuine Russian sweep that the work demands. It is also 
worthy of mention that on the same "All Tschaikowsky" program, 
his wife, the famous pianist, Tina Lerner (whom he married m 
1915), appeared as soloist, playing the Russian composer's "Piano 
Concerto in B flat minor." This fìne musician combined a truly 
womanly tenderness with masculine power. 

In June of 1924, Shavitch made his dèbut with the London 
Symphony, which resulted in immediate re-engagements. The 
London Timcs found him a "conductor of real authonty anci 
knowledge," while Ernest Newman, the f amous critic, approved his 
"great technical skill." On June 23 of the same year he led the 
Lamoreau Orchestra at his Paris dèbut as fìrst conductor. In the 
Fall of 1924, he was engaged as conductor of the Syracuse Sym- 
phony Orchestra; under his direction this organization has 
prospered to such a degree that it is now one of America's 
permanent symphony orchestras. 

In June of 1925, Shavitch returned to Paris, again leadmg 
Lamoreau and the Pasdeloup orchestras. Then he returned to 
Syracuse. Of his successes in Europe during 1926, the fol- 
lowing cable despatch speaks convincingly : 

"This evening, April 12, Vladimir Shavitch, conductor of the 
Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, appearing for the third time in as 
many seasons as guest conductor of the London Symphony, 
conducted a long exacting program. At the end of the symphony 
the audience not only applauded frantically but arose and shouted, 
recalling the conductor. The orchestra, too, joined in the demon- 
stration. Shavitch's three appearances here have firmly estab- 
lished him with London audiences." 

It must be mentioned here that the London Symphony Orches- 
tra's subscription concerts are distinguished for their conductors. 
Among those who appeared during the season of 1926 were Albert 
Coates, Bruno Walter, and Felix Weingartner. In April, Shavitch 
and Sir Edward Elgar closed the symphony season. Following 



his London engagement, Shavitch was again guest conductor of 
the regular concerts of the Pasdeloup Orchestra. 

Shavitch is not only an excellent pianist and conductor, but 
also an earnest and gifted composer. His teachers in theory, 
harmony and orchestration were Hugo Kaun and Paul Juon. Like 
his wife, he is a charming and highly intelligent personality. 


The piistory of music in Berlin will forever remain intimately 
associated with the name of the conductor Julius Stern. Much 
of an enduring nature has been done in the cause of music in that 

city by this talented musician and execu- 

• I tive. In 1847 he established a Choral 

Society, which later became famous. 
The directorship of this Society later 
passed into the hands of such men as 
Julius Stockhausen (1873), Max Bruch 
(1878), S. Sudorf (1880), and Fried- 
rich Gernsheim (1890). In 1850, with 
Kullak and Marks, he founded a 
conservatory which bears his name to 
this day, and is held in great esteem 
throughout the world. When Kullak in 
1855, and Marks in 1857, abandoned 
the conservatory, Stern continued the 
work alone and unaided. From 1869 to 

1871 Stern conducted the Berlin Symphony Gapeila, and from 
1873 to 1878 conducted the orchestra in Reichheim, organized 
by himself. He also left his mark on the choral life of Berlin, 
being for many years chief director of the choruses of the Jewish 
reformed congregations. 

Julius Stern was born on August 8, 1820 in Breslau. He 
studied the violin there under Lìistner, and later was a pupil of 
Maurer, Ganz, and St. Lubin in Berlin. In 1843 his teacher at 
the Academy was Ruhenhagen. At that time he was awarded the 
prize for his sacred overture. 

Thanks to the stipend granted him by King Friedrich-Wilhelm 
IV, he undertook a voyage in 1843 with a view to rounding out 
his education. He fìrst visited Dresden, where he took singing 
lessons with the famous Johann Kikscha. Later he went to Paris 
where he began his career by becoming conductor of the German 

156 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Siriging Society there. Stern wrote some compositions for voice, 
and transcribed Bach's and Handel's oratorios for the piano. 

It is characteristic of Wagner, the author of Judais'm in Music, 
that he, accepted the services of such Jewish conductors as Levi 
and Stern, when they could assist his interests and aims. To Levi 
he entrusted the presentation of "Parsifal," an opera steeped in 
the deepest mysteries and allegories of mediaeval Christianity, ancl 
to Julius Stern he came for aid in other matters. From 1859 on, 
Stern and Wagner were in active correspondence. 

In one of his letters to Stern (October 30, 1859), Wagner says 
regarding his desperate conditions in Paris, the city of his exile : 
"By the mercy of the Saxon king and the consent of the general 
German public, regarding the exposure of politically compromised 
persons, I am forced to abandon all hope of ever returning to 
Germany, and must begin planning to make Paris my permanent 
home. ..." When on April 30, 1871, Wagner finally returnecl 
to the Vaterland, and visited Berlin, the local Musical Society 
gave him a royal welcome at the Singakademie, and on that 
occasion his own overture was played to Stern's baton. In 1872, 
at the laying of the corner-stone of the Bayreuth Theatre, when 
Wagner wanted to make the event historical by giving Beethoven's 
"Ninth Symphony," he came to the same Stern to lend him his 
best singers for the occasion. 

When in 1866, the "Niebelungen Ring" was given, Stern was 
of course there. The following letter from Stern to his wife 
belongs to that period. 

"On the way to Wagner I met Frau Cosima, who received me 
quite graciously. Mr. Richard was at the theatre. At this time 
he was even more genial with me than usual, and I believe was 
genuinely glad to see me. To those present he introcluced me as 
his 'oldest and best-tried friend/ Liszt is living in Wagner's 
home, furnished in the Parisian taste in the grandest and most 
refìned fashion. And ten years ago he wanted to buy a warm 
overcoat for his trip to St. Petersburg on the instalment plan. 
I speak of Wagner, the owner of all those riches !" 

Professor Julius Stern died in Berlin on February 27, 1880. 


Ljov Shteinberg is an excellent Russian conductor, both in the 
operative and symphonic fields, and has a wide reputation through- 
out Russia. 




This gifted young Russian-American violinist and conductor was 
born near Kieff, Russia in 1886, of a family known in the musical 
life of Russia for a century and a half. At the age of fìve he was 
taught to play the violin by his father, 
who put him through a rigid training 
until 1893, when he was admitted to the 
violin section of the Kieff Municipal 
Orchestra. His parents have always 
insisted upon strict scholastic routine, 
as well as musical training, so the lad 
had no opportunity for the normal 
recreations of childhood. He tells of 
nodding over his violin at concerts, worn 
out with long practice, school work, and 
the late hours necessary as concert per- 
former, and being awakened by a rude 
rap of the conductor's baton on his 
head. Despite his youth, he toured 
Russia as a regularly employed member of the Municipal Orchestra 
of Kieff. 

In 1898 his parents sold all their possessions including young 
Nikolai's only companion, his violin, and came to America. The 
lonely lad, deprived of his only recreation and self-expression, his 
music, wandered about the streets of New Haven, whither his 
parents brought him. He deciphered a window card announcing a 
musical contest at the Yale University School of Music. He 
earned the money to buy a three-dollar violin, started preparing 
for the contest, then presented himself to the professor a week 
after the contest had closed, failing to understand the time limit 
of the competition. But he secured a private hearing, and a 
special scholarship was created for him because of the splendid 
musicianship he displayed. 

In 1903, at the age of seventeen, Sokoloff was invited by 
Willem Gericke, conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, to 
join its first violin section. He then placed himself under the 
tutelage of Charles Martin Loeffler, the American composer, with 
whom he remained throughout his employment with the Boston- 
ians. In 1907 he went to Paris on the advice of Loeffler, to study 
and concertize. There he secured an audience with Vincent 
d'Indy, the French composer and leader of the modernist school, 
and received instruction from him. 

During the year 1911, concert work in France and England 

158 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

brought him tremendous success, resulting in a call to Manchester, 
England. There he conducted an orchestra for a short time. The 
same year he returned to America as concert master of the 
Russian Symphony Orchestra. Five years later, in 1916, he was 
called to San Francisco as leader and fìrst violinist in a String 
Quartet, and the same year was also appointed conductor of the 
San Francisco Philharmonic Orchestra. He resigned this post in 
1917, and went overseas to France to play for the American 
soldiers. Upon his return in 1918, he conducted a series oi' 
concerts in Cincinnati. 

In 1918 Sokoloff was asked to come to Cleveland as musical 
adviser, to survey music in schools and aid the newly incorporated 
Association to carry out its plans. 

He then organized the Cleveland Orchestra with fifty-five 
musicians, and gave the fìrst series of concerts, which included 
three symphonies, four popular concerts, thirteen special concerts, 
and seven out-of-town concerts. The Cleveland Orchestra, thus 
established, began at once to make musical history under the 
guidance of its virile and forceful conductor. The next years 
were marked by the phenomenal success of the Cleveland Orches- 
tra, and a constantly widening circle of renown for both 
organization and conductor. 

In 1922 Sokoloff was invited as first American conductor to 
direct the London Symphony Orchestra at the National Welsh 
Eisteddfod. There he gave two concerts before 30,000 people, 
with such success that each year brought a renewal .of the invita- 
tion to come as guest-conductor of the London Symphony. In 
1923 he was invited to London and Stockholm; among other 
concerts in the English capital, he conducted two concerts in 
Queen's Hall. Illness prevented his acceptance of an invitation to 
conduct the Symphony Orchestra of Barcelona, Spain, organized 
and conducted by Pablo Casals, the world-famous 'cellist. At his 
sixth guest-conductorship of the London Symphony Orchestra, he 
conducted two concerts, introducing Londoners to Chaiies Martin 
Loeffler's "Pagan Poem." From his youth, his friendship with 
Loeffìer has been growing, and Sokoloff seldom misses an oppor- 
tunity to introduce the work of this truly noble but unfortunately 
seldom heard musician, both in the United States and abroad. 

His concerts were enthusiastically received by capacity houses, 
and Sokoloff was fèted by the most prominent music patrons of 

In 1925 Sokoloff was also asked to conduct the New York 
Philharmonic Orchestra for a week during the Summer concert 
season at the Lewisohn Stadium. This appearance was recorded 
as a triumph, and he was immediately re-engaged for the following 
Summer season. 





MlCHAEL Taube, the yoimg Russian-German conductor, was born 
on March 13, 1890, in Locìz, Poland. His father, a teacher and 
musical director of that city, gave his son his fìrst music lessons 
at the age of eight. 

From 1910 to 1911 he studied piano 
in Leipzig with Professor Teichmiiller. 
From 1917 to 1918 he studied counter- 
point and composition in Kòln with Pro- 
fessor Stràsser. The two following 
years he studied conducting in the same 
city with Abendroth. After being grad- 
uated from the Kòln Conservatory, he 
soon became leader of the Munieipal 
Symphony concerts in Bad Godesberg, 
Germany, where he was immediately ac- 
claimed by the press. 

Since 1922 he has been invited to 
conduct six annual subscription concerts 
in Kòln, where he enjoys great vogue. He also conducts opera and 
concerts in Berlin, Frankfort, and other cities. In 1923 Taube 
accepted the position of permanent conductor at the Charlotten- 
burg Deutschen Opernhaus, where he works with Bruno Walter, 
and where he is considered a priceless member of the staff. In 
addition to his operatic activities, he conducts a number of sym- 
phony concerts with the Berlin Philharmony. 

In 1926 he organized the Neuen Kammerorchester, and the fol- 
lowing year the Kammerchorus, both in Berlin. 

He has written a Sonata for piano ; Variations, for two pianos 
on a Beethoven theme ; Suite, in the old style, f or violin and piano ; 
Hymne, for mixed chorus; songs and small pieces for the piano. 

Of him, the Cologne Post wrote, on March, 1920 : "It is seldom 
that music lovers enjoy such a treat as Saturday night's Grand 
Orchestral Concert which the conductor Michael Taube gave with 
his orchestra, and the co-operation of Georg Bertram, the great 
pianist from Berlin. The programme opened with Beethoven's 
Leonoren Overture No. 2 and the masterly rendering of the 
Maestro's chef-d'oeuvre immediately revealed what a wonderful 
Beethoven interpreter Taube is, and his ability to bring out all the 
delicacies, power and joy Beethoven expresses in that heavenly 
work. Next came Brahms' C minor symphony, which raised the 
audience to a pitch of enthusiasm seldom witnessed. At the close 
of this remarkable concert Michael Taube was called over and over 

160 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

again to acknowledge the f rantic applause accorded him by a highly 
pleased audience." 

Mr. Taubman, the well-known critic of the Berlin Borsen 
Courier, thus commented on his production and conductorship of 
the "Freischiitz" at the Deutschen Opernhaus: "Mr. Taube was 
in full command, not only over partitur and orchestra, but also 
over the singers and staff. His tempos and nuances are tasteful 
and fìne. Summa summarum, he is a conductor yar excellence." 

Taube is a delightful charming personality. In meeting him, 
one gets the impression that here indeed is a true artist. One is 
won by his absolute sincerity. To him, art is no commercial ven- 
ture, but a sacred trust. 

He is not alone a conductor and composer, but plays the piano 
and 'cello in a masterly way. 


Irvin Talbot, musical director of the Paramount Theatre, of 
New York City, was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on January 27, 
1896. At six years of age, he began to study violin under Christo- 
pher Jakob. 

From 1912 to 1917 he played with 
the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, un- 
der the direction of Max Zach. Upon 
America's entrance into the World War, 
he was commissioned bandleader of the 
Sixty-ninth Inf antry. The war over, he 
returned to St. Louis, and became con- 
ductor at the Pershing Theatre. 

Talbot accepted an invitation in 1920 
to become musical director of the Mis- 
souri Theatre, in St. Louis — one of the 
largest theatres in the Middle West. It 
was here that Hugo Riesenfeld, manag- 
ing director of the Rivoli and Rialto 
Theatres, of New York City, saw and was so impressed by his 
work that he offered him the conductorship of the Rivoli. 

Under the direction of Riesenfeld, his progress was rapid. 
He gained distinction as a synchronizer and conductor of cinema 
music. He was invited in May, 1925 to be guest conductor for 
eight weeks at the Los Angeles Metropolitan Theatre, af ter the ter- 
mination of which engagement he returned and opened the New 
Mosque Theatre, in Newark, New Jersey. 



In January, 1926, Nathaniel Finston, musical clirector of all 
Publix Theatres, offered Talbot the directorship of the musical 
representations of the Rivoli. Here, as orchestra leader, score 
writer and arranger, his work won merited recognition. New 
York newspaper writers mention "sincerity," "modesty," and 
"simplicity," as the qualities that characterize his art. 

So marked was his progress that when the Paramount 
Theatre, New York, one of the finest in the woiid, opened in Nov- 
ember, 1926, he was chosen as its musical director. 


On a summer's afternoon in 1910, when I played as soloist at the 
Merchant's Club in Kiev, under Schneevoigt, I made a vist to an 
olcl friend of mine, Dzimitrovsky, then conductor at the Brodsky 
Synagogue, where I too was a chorister 
in my childhood. In the basement of the 
synagogue were the rehearsal hall and 
the class rooms, where the candidates 
for the great choir pursued their aca- 
demic as well as their musical studies. 
I arrived while Dzimitrovsky was giving 
a piano lesson. Among the assembled 
boys was a dark haired, pale lad of 
twelve, small for his years. 

It was Lazar Weiner who, Dzimi- 
trovsky said, had a great gift for the 
piano. When I met him again, eleven 
years later, I found him a mature 
musician, then holding the position as 
coach and conciuctor, and giving piano lessons in New York City 
This young, energetic and talented musician, was born in 
Charkass, near Kiev, Russia, on October 15, 1897. At the age of 
seven he began to sing in the choir of the Cherkass Synagogue. 
At ten he came to Kiev, entering Dzimitrovsky's choir. There h^ 
studied the piano under the conductor until he was fourteen He 
then entered the Kiev Conservatory, continuing his piano studies 
under Poukhalski, and theory under Ryb. After three years at 
the conservatory, he left with his family for the United States 
arriving here in 1914. ' 
In 1921 he resumed harmony and took up orchestration with 

Jacoby, ancl later with Benett, in New York City. In 1923 

Weiner organized the New York Freiheit Gesangs Verein an 
amateur chorus of several hundrecl Jewish shop workers. ' He 

162 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

became and remains its conductor. By unremitting effort he suc- 
ceeded in bringing this body of men and women to a degree of 
perfection among amateur choruses. At the same time, Weiner 
is also conductor of the choruses of the Folk's Universitet in 
New York. 

He has also written many songs, piano pieces, incidental 
music to the drama "Day and Night," pieces for violin, for 'cello 
and also two unpublished compositions for orchestra. He is at 
present engaged in setting Levick's poem "Der Golem" for chorus, 
solo and orchestra. Weiner's work belongs to the school of 
impressionists, and shows much originality and melodic invention. 


Bruno Walter, was a pupil of Gustav Mahler, and is one of the 
world's greatest living conductors of symphonic and operatic music. 
At the present day no music festival in any part of Europe or 
America is complete without Walter's 
name among the conductors. Walter is 
furthermore an enterprising operatic 
manager and gifted composer. 

He was born in Berlin on September 
15, 1876, and was a student at the 
Stern Conservatory undèr Ehrlich, Buss- 
ier and Robert Radeka. He began his 
career as a conductor of opera, working 
in Cologne, Breslau, Hamburg, Press- 
burg, Riga, Berlin ( Royal Opera House) , 
Vienna (Court Opera, 1901-1912). In 
1911 he became conductor of the Sing- 
akademie in Vienna, and from 1912 to 
1922 was general music director in 

Bruno Walter is now an independent conductor, traveling 
freely to almost all parts of the world as guest conductor. 
During the season of 1922-23 he conducted the New York 
Symphony, repeating his engagements during the following two 
seasons. In 1924 he also conducted in London. This was the first 
German opera season since the war, and was enormously 
successful. The audiences were warm, responsive, and absolutely 
sympathetic. The human side of the visit was fully as enjoyable 
as the artistic. Arrangements have since been made to repeat the 
German season the following year. Walter also gave a series of 



concerts with the Vienna Symphony, and conductecl Mengelberg's 
orchestra in Amsterdam. On completion of his American series 
at the end of March, 1925, he returned to Amsterdam to conduct 
the Mozart "Requiem," and also to conclude his Berlin cycle, 
giving three concerts in Vienna before going to London. 

Bruno Walter is not an admirer of ultra-modern music, 
although it cannot be said that he is conservative. "The conductor 
in me leads me to do what I can for modern music, but the 
musician is not always convinced," says Walter. "Many experi- 
menters in modern music seem to me to be walking sidewise. 
There is no convincing impression of progress or development in 
what they are doing. They are too absorbed in trying to discover 
something sensational. The octave with half-tones does not 
satisfy them as the basis of music. They want to add to it a brand 
new set of quarter-tones. And then, they are intent on repro- 
ducing musically all sorts of machines and other extraordinary 

"One gets dizzy trying to follow them. I am amazed, inter- 
ested, curious to see what will happen next. Without doubt 
something of value will evolve out of the present chaos. Indeed 
much already has. There are a number of Russian composers 
who are producing music that is really fìne as well as exceedingly 
original and audacious. Prokofieff is one of them. In Englancl, 
Holst and Vaughan Williams represent the best of the New 
school. For my part I am still a conservative — a member of a 
great audience that is bedazzled with watching a seven-ring 
circus. My eyes cannot follow the changes — they are too swift." 

Bruno Walter is at present playing the troubadour through 
the length and breadth of Europe, presenting Wagner cycles and 
symphony concerts, particularly in Germany. 


Mischa Shteiman, at present chief conductor of the Gorodskoy 
Theatre of Moscow, is one of the most talentecl of the younger 
Russian operatic conductors. 

164 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Raoe 


Josiah Zuro's life has been one of service to music — a devotion 
so strong that even when it demanded an outlay of money running 
into thousands of dollars he did not hesitate to pay. His Sunday 
Symphonic Society is supported almost 
entirely out of his own pocket but, 
hoping that the sight of other contribu- 
tors might stimulate further donations 
from the audiences, he listed his own 
contributions under various names. This 
is indeed, a proof of a devotion that 
hardly has a parellel in musical history. 
But these Sunday concerts organized by 
him are not his only contribution to the 
cause of American music. 

Zuro was born in Byelostock, Russia, 
on November 27, 1887. His father's 
ambition was to make of his son a rabbi, 
but the boy's inclinations were decidedly 
musical and not rabbinical. He used to gather his friends about 
him and form an "orchestra", of which he was leader, somewhere 
behind the shed. In spite of family opposition, he insisted upon 
a musical career. He began to study at the great Conservatory in 
Odessa. There his talents were recognized, and he had a place in 
the school orchestra with a view to becoming a conductor. After a 
final year at the Cracow Conservatory, he came with his family to 
America, when he was eighteen years old. 

By this time the fortune of the family had dwindled and their 
only resource was their musical talent. The older Zuro had a fìne 
voice, and his son could play the piano. They both found work at 
the Manhattan Opera House under Hammerstein, whose special 
protègè Josiah became. There he was given the title of assistant 
conductor and a very small salary. He played the piano during 
rehearsals. The following year, Hammerstein's chorus master 
left. Zuro asked for the post, and got it. 

An interesting incident in his life was his meeting with 
Campanini. The Italian was nearly overcome with indignation 
when he saw a nineteen-year-old chorus master. But at a 
rehearsal of "The Damnation of Faust," which Zuro was con- 
ducting, Campanini stepped up to him and gave him a resounding 
kiss on each cheek for his expert handling of the chorus. 

After the closing of Hammerstein's opera in 1909, Zuro gavfl 



grand opera performances in New York's East Side with his 
own company. Then he went to the Pacific Coast where he 
produced "Aida" in San Francisco during the World Exposition 
in that city. Later he became conductor at the Century Opera 
in New York. His operatic ventures culminated with the signal 
honor of being asked to produce three open-air grand-opera 
performances for the city of New York in the Summer of 1925. 

Zuro has in the course of his career conducted musical comedy, 
grand opera, managed his own "Zuro Company," and given 
concerts throughout the country. He was with the Paramount 
motion picture theatres in New York City for over six years, 
as director of presentation, in which capacity he has directed and 
developed many vocalists, instrumentalists, and performers of 
various kinds. 


Savel Zilberts was born in Pinsk, Russia, on November 7, 1881. 
His father was then one of the most widely known cantors, ancl 
he took care that his child, who at the age of nine was already 
showing marked musical talents, should 
receive a sound and thorough musical 

At the age of eighteen, Savel entered 
the Warsaw Conservatory of Music, 
studying piano, harmony, theory, com- 
position, and singing. The talented young 
man also possessed a lyric baritone of 
fìne quality. In fact, as time went on, 
an operatic career seemed to be the aim 
of the young artist. However, fate hacì 
arranged matters differently. We fìnd 
Zilberts in 1903 as conductor of the 
Hazonim Society in Lodz. In 1906 he 
was called to Moscow to fill the position 
of director of the largest temple there, which is also one of the 
greatest in the world. In 1914, he returned to Lodz, taking back 
his old position and giving many interesting concerts there. In 
1920 Zilberts came to New York, where he accepted the post of 
director of the Cantors' Association of America, and also opened 
a studio for vocal training in New York. 

Zilberts has composecl a number of songs and sundry other 
works, especially for choruses a capella, and with organ or piano 

166 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

accompaniments, but is very' well known as one of the ablest 
conductors of oratorios and chorus works. 

In 1922 Zilberts organized the Hazomir Choral Society, and 
the Young Men's and Women's Hebrew Association of Newark, 
New Jersey. 


Tiiis eminent German conductor and prolific opera composer 
started his musical career in 1910, when he became conductor of 
the Komisches Opera in Berlin. Since 1912 he conducted at the 
German Opera House in Charlottenburg. 
During the season of 1924-25 he also 
conducted, with great success, the New 
York Symphony Orchestra. 

Following is a list of Waghalter's 
works: "The Devil's Road" (Berlin, 
1912") ; "Mandragola" (Charlottenburg, 
1914) ; "Youth" (words from Max Halle 
by R. Wienhoppel, Berlin, 1917) ; "The 
Late Guest," (Berlin, 1912 and 1922) ; 
"To Whom Does Helen Belong?" (Ber- 
lin, 1914) ; "Satan" (P. Milo, Charlot- 
tenburg, 1923). 

Waghalter also wrote a violin con- 
certo, Opus 15; a string quartet, Opus 
3, and a violin sonata, Opus 5. 



Hungary, land of wine ancl song, is also the land of musicians. 
It is particularly the home of violinists. The gypsy music of 
Hungary conquered the whole woiid. Such virtuosi as Joachim, 
Mischa Hauser, Jacob Griin, Eduard 
Remenyi, Edward Singer, Tivaclor Na- 
chez, Carl Flesch, Joseph Szigeti, and 
many other musicians come from that 
enchanted land of melody. 

Leopold Auer is also a son of this 
country of chardash and paprika. He 
was born on June 7, 1845, in the little 
Hungarian town of Veszprem. His 
father was a house-painter of consider- 
able skill, who was received everywhere 
despite his humble social position, and 
held a sort of recognizecl place as a 
decorator ancl beautifìer. On the occa- 
sion of these professional visits he would 
mention the fact that he had a boy of five who, according to those 
in a position to juclge, had a gift for music. It was during one 
of these conversations that he laid the basis for little Leopold's 

At four years of age Auer showed an understanding of rhythm. 
At eight he was taken to Budapest and appointed to the Budapest 
Conservatory, in the class of Professor Ridley Kohen. At the 
same time he continued the regular school curriculum at the 
boarding school, where he was treated with much consideration. 

Later, Auer started taking lessons from the famous Professor 
Jacob Dont. He it was who gave him the foundation of violin 
technique. At the same time he took lessons at the Conservatory 
under Professor Josef Helmesberger. In 1858 his studies at the 
conservatory, and the lessons under Dont came to an end, since 
the money necessary for the continuation of his musical studies 
was not forthcoming. His father appeared in Vienna one day and 
took him travelling as an infant prodigy, giving concerts in the 
provinces, in order to earn the money necessary to support the 
family in Hungary. Upon being graduated later from the con- 
servatory, with the first prize, he left for Hanover, to study with 
Josef Joachim, uncler whose guidance he soon became an accom- 
plished artist. 

For four years Auer toured through many cities, winning 
abundant laurels, as violinist. In the Spring of 1861, he arrived 

170 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

in Paris and gave a morning recital at the Salle Pleyel, arranged 
for him by persons of influence, to make it possible for him to 
continue his studies. At this recital he was assisted by the famous 
pianist, Josef Wieniawsky, the brother of Henry, the great 
violinist. In Paris, Auer, thanks to Moscheles, succeeded in 
making friends with Rossini and Berlioz, who fully appreciated 
his great talent. While studying under Joachim in Hanover, he 
drew the attention of Ferdinand David Nils Gade, the greatest 
composer Denmark has produced, Madame Clara Schumann, 
Ferdinand Hiller, and many other celebrities. 

After two years in Hanover, he and his father, having ex- 
hausted all their reseources, took leave of the beloved Joachim, in 
order that the young Auer might try to make his dèbut at one of the 
big Leipzig Gewandhaus concerts. He was invited to play there by 
Ferdinand David, Mendelssohn's friend, who had heard him play 
in Hanover. This was in November of 1863 or 1864. This is what 
Auer says about this concert in his book My Long Life in Music : 

"The day of the concert I was so nervous that I could not eat a 
thing. My father, in despair, brought a little bottle of seasoned 
Bordeaux wine along with him to the hall, and at the moment when 
I was about to step out on the stage, made me swallow a tiny glass 
of it. It produced the effect desired. I stepped out, f ull of courage, 
and actually scored quite a success, for not only did David and the 
other artists congratulate me warmly, but the press was praising 

me as well." 

In 1863 he received the position of concert master in Dusseldorff, 
and in 1865 had a similar appointment in Hamburg, where he met 
and appeared with Brahms. 

In 1868 Auer was invited to take the post of professor at the 
Conservatory of St. Petersburg, succeeding Henry Wieniawski, who 
received at that time the title of "Soloist to his Majesty the Em- 
peror," to play the soli expressly composed for the ballets. In 1782, 
when Wieniawski resigned, Auer succeeded him and held that post 
until 1906, when he retired with a right to retain his title of "Solo- 
ist to the Czar." Due to the great talent of his playing and his 
pedagogic abilities, Auer was, and still is, one of the greatest violin 
teachers the world has ever known. He is not only a great teacher 
of the violin, but a great authority and excellent guide in the art 
of chamber music and ensemble playing. 

It is necessary to mention only a f ew of his many pupils : Jascha 
Heifetz, Mischa Elman, Efrem Zimbalist, Cecilia Hansen, Kathleen 
Parlow, Eddie Brown, David Hochstein, Toscha Seidel, Alexander 
Bloch, Ruth Ray, Myron Poliakin, the brothers Piastro, Maia 
Bang, Thelma Givens, Joseph Achron, Francis Macmillen, Jaroslav 
Siskowsky, Stassevitch, Max Rosen, Ruth Breton, Burgin, Jascha 
Fischberg, Vladimir Grafman, Benno Rabinoff, and many others. 



Auer is also famous for founding the St. Petersburg Quartet, 
composed of two of his pupils, Korgueif, Kruger, Werzbilowitch, 
and himself. Auer also played much chamber music with the 
famous cellists, Alfred Piattil and Karl Davidoff, and such pianists 
as Anton Rubinstein, Annette Essipova, and other great celebrities. 

The writer of these lines remembers with much gratitude the 
unforgettable days during the years 1910-1915, when he had the 
pleasure of attending Auer's chamber-music classes at the St. 
Petersburg Conservatory. 

From 1878 till 1892 Auer was director of the Symphonic Con- 
certs of the Imperial Musical Society in St. Petersburg, where he 
had the privilege of presenting two works of the greatest impor- 
tance : Berlioz' "Requiem," and the whole of the incidental music 
to "Manfred" by Robert Schumann, to the Russian text. 

Tschaikowsky's famous violin concerto was dedicated to Auer, 
who for some reason of his own, ref used at first to play it. Tschai- 
kowsky, very angry, re-dedicated the score to another famous 
violinist, Adolph Brodsky. 

Professor Auer's career has been an amazing one. It contains a 
brilliant kaleidoscopic perspective of artistic Europe and Russia 
of the last sixty years, with the present and the future in music of 
this younger and newer land, America. Auer looks back to ac- 
quaintances and intimate friendships, among which he numbers 
Franz Liszt, Rubinstein, Joachim, Brahms ; the Russian "Five," 
Tschaikowsky, KTapoleoxi III, Abclul Hamid II, Rossiiii, Henry 

Vieuxtemps, Clara Schumann, Richard and Johannes Strauss, 
Saint-Saens, Gounod, Gladstone, Disraeli, Turgeniev, von Bulow, 
and others. 

In 1918, shortly after the Russian revolution, Auer, at the age 
of seventy-three, sailed for Christiania, where he established a 
home for himself and some of his pupils in Vocsenkollen, a famous 
Norwegian hotel on a high mountain near Christiania. In 1920 
he, together with Mme Bogutzka-Stein, now his wife, and some of 
his pupils, came to New York, where he establishecì his residence 
and studios. On April 28, 1925, his eightieth birthday, his two 
pupils, Heifetz and Zimbalist, arranged a magnificent gala-concert 
at Carnegie Hall, New York, in his honor. Ossip Gabrilowitz, 
Joseph Hofmann, Serge Rachmaninoff, and Paul Stassevitch played 
on that occasion. The program f ollows : 
I. Vìvaldi: Concerto in F major for three . violins. Played by 
Auer, Heifetz, and Zimbalist (the cadenza was by Joseph 
Achron, also a former pupil of Auer), with Stassevitch at 
the piano. 

II. Brahms : Sonata in D minor. Played by Zimbalist and 

172 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

III. Tschaikoiusky: A Melody. 
Brahms: Hungarian Dance. 

IV. Auer : Romance. 

Joseph Achron: Pensèe de Leopold Auer. 
Auer: Tarantelle de Concert. 

Played by Heifetz, with Zimbalist at the piano. 
V. Chopin: Polonaise. 

Tschaikotvsky : Berceuse. 
Wagner-Liszt: Isolde's Liebestodt. 
Played by Josef Hofmann. 
VI. Bach: Concerto in D Minor for two violins. Played by 
Heifetz and Zimbalist, with Stassevitch at the piano. 
The writer remembers that concert very well, not only because 
of the significance of the occasion, but because of the great gather- 
ing of celebrities on that evening. Carnegie Hall has seldom held 
a more illustrious audience. All seats were sold weeks in advance, 
standing room was at a premium, and hundreds of people were 
turned away. This audience was composed not alone of celebratecl 
musicians, but of great captains of industry, fìnanciers, etc. 

Auer's long life as violinist and teacher is like one triumphal 
march, during which he has moved under a constant shower of 
medals, prizes, and other distinctions without number. He received 
decorations from many sovereigns, including the Chevalier du Le- 
gion d'Honneur, conferred upon him by the French Republic, the 
little Meininger Cross, the Grand Cross of the Order of St. Stan- 
islav (with a star) — a high cìistinction which he shared with only 
two other Russian musicians : Saf onofT and Napravnik, ancl which 
was handed him personally by the Czar on his twenty-fìfth jubilee 
at the conservatory of St. Petersburg. He also playecl for the Kings 
of Sweden and Norway, and for the Turkish Sultan, Abdul 
Hamid II. 

In his studio in New York we fìnd him to this day very active, 
instructing his numerous students. Professor Auer is very ener- 
getic. His bright brown eyes radiate life, his cheeks are fresh and 
full of color, his face full of expression. He looks wise, skeptical, 
and optimistic. At eighty-two he is as full of ambition as many a 
youngster at twenty-fìve. 

Aside from some pieces he wrote for the violin, he also wrote: 
My Long Life in Music and Violin Playing as I Teach It. 

Auer is not a builder of technique, or a teacher of beginners. 
Pupils who are accepted by him must already be technically pro- 
ficient, and it may be stated that the teacher who can prepare pu- 
pils for Auer must stand pretty high in the profession. Auer is 
considered a great adviser, a former of style ancì master of inter- 
pretation, to whom pupils flock too early, and feel aggrieved if 
they are not at once accepted. 




Alberto Abraiiam Bachmann, eminent Swiss-French violinist, 
was born on March 20, 1875, in Geneva of Russian parents. He 
studied under Ysaye, Thomson, Brodsky, Hubay and Petri, and 
was awarded fìrst prize at the Lille con- 

As a performer on the violin, Bach- 
mann is equipped with a splendid tech- 
nique and a broad tone. 

He made many successful tours in 
Europe and came to the United States in 
1916, where he toured with great success. 
Later he became a member of the New 
Y o r k Philharmonic Orchestra, ancl 
taught the violin privately. He has toured 
the world, and has received many of- 
fìcial decorations. 

Some of his compositions include 
three concertos, a sonata, two suites and 
many light violin pieces. He has also written many important 
works dealing with the violin and violinists, including an encyclo- 
pedia of the violin (1925). Among some of his books are: 
"Les Grandes Violinistes chc Passè" (1913) ; "Le Violon" (1906) ; 
"Gymnastique" (1914). 

Bachmann returned in 1922 to Paris where he opened a studio 
for teaching and concertizing. 


Alexander Bloch, well-known American violinist and teacher, was 
born in Selma, Alabama, on July 11, 1881, and received his gen- 
eral education in New York City, where he studied in public and 
private schools, and at Columbia University. He pursued his mu- 
sical education at the same time, studying under Edward Hermann 
in New York, Otokar Sevcik in Petrograd, and Leopold Auer in 
Vienna. Bloch studied theory under Lilienthal in New York. 

Upon being graduated from Auer's classes, Bloch was appointed 
concert master of the Tiflis Symphony orchestra, and on his return 
to America began his pedagogic career by accepting the post of 
head of the violin department of the Washington Conservatory of 
Music. His formal American dèbut as virtuoso was made in New 
York, in 1913. 

174 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

While in Vienna, Bloch married a gifted pianist, with whom he 
giyes a series of sonata recitals each season at Aeolian Hall, in 
New York. Here they gave their performance of important 
works, among them sonatas of Magnard and the much discussed 
"Sonata" by Pizzetti. They were also the fìrst to give a public 
■performance of the entire cycle of Beethoven's piano and violin 

Bloch is the author of a number of published technical studies, 
among them Scale Studies in Double Stops, Finger Strengthening 
Exercises, and Principles and Practice of Boiving. He has beeìi 
for the past few seasons an assistant to Leopold Auer in New York, 
and is considered by him an excellent pedagogue, and one of the 
best interpreters of his methods. Of the violinists chosen from 
every State in the United States for Juilliard Foundation Fellow- 
ships, 25 per cent were his pupils. 

Because of his great popularity as a teacher, Alexander Bloch 
has practically abandoned his career as artist. "Either the pupil 
must suffer from lack of continuity in his lessons and from a super- 
fìcial interest on the part of the teacher," Bloch says, "or the 
teacher must suffer from giving his all to his pupil so that he is 
not fit to concertize. Concert work demands all of one's interest 
and strength ; and if you are really giving yourself to your students, 
as a goocl teacher always does, you will have little or nothing left 
to offer an audience." 

He conducts summer classes with his wife in the Berkshire 
Hills, where he has 110 acres of ground, "just enough," he says, 
"for each of my violin pupils to have an acre to himself and not 
be heard by any of his colleagues, nor yet by Mrs. Bloch and 

Alexander Bloch is one of those delightful persons who does 
not take life too seriously. He is an unsentimental soul, and he 
does not name his fìddle, nor talk to it in endearing terms. Be- 
cause of this, perhaps, he has becn a great favorite of the New 
York bohemian colony. 


Naum Blinder, the Russian violinist, was born at Evpatoria, in 
the Crimea, and was distinguished as a child procjigy. He studied 
with Fidelman in Odessa, and with Brodsky in Manchester. After 
touring Europe he returned to Russia in 1912. He is at present 
professor of the Moscow Conservatory, and enjoys a high reputa- 
tion as a soloist, chamber music player, ancl pedagogue. 




The eminent violinist, Adolph Brodsky, a pupil of Helmes- 
berger, was born on March 28, 1851, in Taganrog, Southern Rus- 
sia. When only nine years old, he gave a public concert in Odessa, 
and upon being graduated from the 
Vienna Conservatory, played second vio- 
lin in the famous Helmesberger String 
Quartet. From 1868 to 1880, Brodsky 
was engaged at the Vienna Opera House, 
and in concerts, with great success. In 
Moscow he made f riends with Ferdinand 
Laub. After Laub's death, Brodsky took 
his place as teacher at the Moscow Con- 
servatory. Prior to this, he concertized 
through Europe for four years. 

In 1879 we fìnd Brodsky conducting 
the Kiev Symphony Concerts. In 1882 
he played for the fìrst time the Tschai- 
kovsky violin concerto, hitherto not 
risked by any other violinist. This concert occurred after Auer, to 
whom the score was previously dedicated, had declared it too dif- 
ficult. When the famous violinist Radeck accepted the position of 
violin teacher at the Cincinnati Conservatory, Brodsky was ap- 
pointed to fill his place at Leipzig. While in that city, he made 
a success of various concerts at the Gewandhaus. 

Because of his long experience in chamber music, acquired in 
the Helmesberger and Laub quartets, he decided to organize his 
own quartet. in Leipzig, under his own name. The second violin 
was played by his friend, the excellent violinist, Hans Sitt, the 
viola was played by one of his pupils, O. Novatcheck, while the 
'cello was played by Leopold Griitzmacher. This ensemblè was 
later changed, the second violin being played by Hans Becker, and 
'cello by the famous Julius Klengel. This quartet is said to have 
had no superior in all Europe, and not more than one equal. 

In 1891 Brodsky resigned his Leipzig position, to take a post 
in the New York Conservatory of Scharwenka. He was also en- 
gaged by Walter Damrosch as concert master in the New York 
Symphony. During his stay in America he appeared in many 
important concerts, and was considered one of the best violinists 
who had come to America up to that time. In 1892 he returned to 
Europe, and after a short sojourn in Berlin received the appoint- 
ment of Director of the Royal College of Music in Manchester, 
England where he succeeded Sir Charles Halle, and where he again 
organized his own string quartet. 

176 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

As a virtuoso and chamber music player par exceUence, Brocì- 
sky was universally successful and popular. As a teacher he also 
won great renown, many of his pupils securing important posi- 
tions in the great orchestras. 

Brodsky was a close friend of Tschaikowsky. He is now living 
in Manchester. 


Seldom has any other violinist occupied so many honorable po- 
sitions as Max Bendix, the noted violinist, pedagogue and con- 
ductor, who was born in Detroit, Michigan, on March 28, 1866. 

His general education he received in 
Cincinnati, New York, and Berlin. Mu- 
sic he studied chiefly with Jacobssohn. 

He became concert master at the Met- 
ropolitan Opera House under Van der 
Stucken, where he remained for two 
seasons. Later he accepted the follow- 
ing positions of fìrst rank: concert 
master and assistant conductor of the 
Theodore Thomas Orchestra (1886-96) ; 
assistant and later successor to Theodore 
Thomas in conducting at the Columbian 
Exposition, Chicago (1893). After mak- 
ing a two-year concert tour as a violin 
virtuoso through the United States, 
he organized the Bendix Quartet (1900). A year later he organ- 
ized his own School of Music. In 1904 he conducted a symphony 
orchestra at the Exposition in St. Louis, and in 1905 was the con- 
cert master in the Wagnerian Operas at the Metropolitan Opera 
House, New York. 

He reached the height of his popularity and fame in 1906, 
when Oscar Hammerstein opened the Manhattan Opera House 
and invited Max Bendix both as concert master and conductor of 
his opera. 

In three successive years he gave recitals all over the United 
States and Europe, winning praise from critics and audiences. 

From 1909 to 1911, he again conducted at the Metropolitan 
Opera House, later cònducting various orchestras including the 
National Orchestra, Chicago (1914-15). (Besides being a splendid 
conductor and violinist, Max Bendix is also a very talented com- 
poser. Among other things he composed: "Thirty-six songs," 
"Tema con Variazioni" for 'cello and orchestra, "The Sisters," a 
ballad for soprano with orchestra, violin concerto in E minor, 
music to the play "Experience," etc. 

Violinists 177 


Eddy Brown was born in Chicago, Illinois, on Juiy 15, 1895. He 
started studying the violin at the age of four, and gave his first 
recital in Indianapolis when six years old. Soon afterwards he was 
taken to Europe, where he became a pu- 
pil of Hubay, at Budapest. At eleven, 
he played the Mendelssohn concerto. In 
a contest open to all violinìsts, he came 
out victor among forty contestants, re- 
ceiving a fìne violin as a prize. In his 
thirteenth year he passed his examina- 
tions at the Royal Conservatory by play- 
ing the Beethoven concerto with orches- 
tra, and on this occasion the celebrated 
virtuoso, David Popper, came on the 
stage and kissed the abashed Eddy 
before an audiewce of 3,000 persons, de- 
claring that he had never heard the work 
played so perfectly since Joachim. 
After touring f or some time, he went to London in 1909, where 
he made his English dèbut at the huge Albert Hall. In London he 
met Leopold Auer and with him went to Russia to study. There 
came a period of fìve years' continuous work under Auer, and then 
his triumphant Berlin appearances, which settled his European 
status once for all. This was at once followed by recital tours 
through Austria-Hungary, Belgium, 'Switzerland, Holland, and 
England again, playing at the Nikisch concerts. 

He returned to America in 1915, and made his American dèbut 
in Indianapolis, playing the Beethoven concerto with the New 
York Symphony Orchestra under Walter Damrosch. His New 
York dèbut followed a few days later. Since then he has 
made recital tours throughout the United States, and has appeared 
with the leading orchestral organizations of the land. His first 
engagement in New York with the Philharmonic Orchestra, under 
Josef Stransky, when he played the Tschaikowsky concerto, took 
place in 1915. 

Eddy Brown has also composed, including songs and works for 
the piano, and has made numerous violin arrangements of the 
works of the classic composers. As a technician and interpreter, 
Brown is ranked very high among contemporary violinists. He 
possesses incredible facility of technique. A sweet caressing tone 
that can be both tender and powerful, and a dashing and brilliant 
style are foremost among the attributes which have made Brown a 

178 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 



RlCHARD BURGIN is one of those fortunate students of the violin 
who has hacl the best teachers the age afforded. Born in Warsaw 
on October 11, 1892, he began to study violin at the age of six, his 
fìrst teacher being Winetzky. Later he 
studied with Lotto, Joachim (in Berlin) 
and Auer in St. Petersburg, being gradu- 
ated with the gold medal f rom the latter's 
class of 1912. 

Burgin made his first public appear- 
ance prior to this accomplishment, how- 
ever, for in 1903 he appeared as soloist 
with the Warsaw Philharmonic Orches- 
tra, of which he became concert master 
in 1914. Burgin was a favorite of the 
famous conductor, George Schneevoigt, 
and appeared with him in Helsingfors, 
1912-15, as concert master of that city's 
symphony orchestra. In 1915, upon being 
graduated from the Warsaw Philharmonic, he became concert 
master in Fitelberg's Orchestra in Pavlovsk, and from 1916 to 
1919 again appeared as concert master with Schneevoigt, this 
time in Christiania, playing also with Nikisch and Richard 
Strauss, during that period. 

Schneevoigt regarded his concert master very highly, but 
when Monteux came, in 1920, to Europe to look for a concert 
master for his disrupted Boston Symphony, Schneevoigt recom- 
mended Burgin warmly to the French conductor. When the 
latter heard Burgin play in Paris, he immediately engaged him. 

Burgin often appeared as soloist with the Boston Symphony 
Orchestra, after he joined its ranks as concert master, playing 
Sibelius' "Concerto in D minor," on January, 1924. He gave a 
performance of the highest merit. He has also been noted for 
his playing of the "Prokofìeff Concerto," both in America and in 

Burgin is also a chamber music performer of exceptional en- 
dowments, and is celebrated as such throughout Europe and Am- 

Violinists 179 


Tradition and environment play a more important part in the 
making of an artist than heredity. This fact is manifested in the 
life and career of Samuel Dushkin. He was born in Russian 
Poland, the land of famous musicians, 
in the little town of Suwalk. 

Since he evinced a desire to play the 
violin at an early age, an instrument was 
put into his eager hands, with such ex- 
cellent results that he entered upon a 
tour of Russia at the age of nine. A 
year later his parents brought him to 
America. In the New World the young 
violinist continued his studies, but feel 
ing that Paris offered better opportun- 
ities, he returned. In the French capital, 
he became absorbed in work, studying 
with Remy at the Conservatoire. Later, 
he became a pupil of Auer and then, for 
a fìnal polishing, of Kreisler. War broke out. Dushkin joined the 
British Army, and when the United States entered the conflict 
was transferred to the American forces. After the Armistice, he 
resumed his artistic career, touring through England and France, 
appearing in recitals and as soloist with the principal orchestras. 
Early in 1924, Dushkin returned to America and gave three suc- 
cessful appearances in rapid succession, which demonstrates how 
completely the public and critics accepted him. His dèbut with the 
New York Symphony Orchestra on January 6, 1924, was 

On October 8, 1924, Dushkin played in Bristol, England, 
then in Wiesbaden, Frankfort, and Darmstadt, followed by ap- 
pearances in Amsterdam with Mengelberg. Later he went to 
France, and gave a recital at the American Conservatory at Fon- 
tainebleau. In the Spring of 1925, Dushkin was invited to per- 
form at the Beethoven Festival in Paris. 

Dushkin is not an artist who relies on virtuoso effects to im- 
press an audience, but one who plays simply and sincerely, with- 
out affectation, and without undue seeking after individuality in 

Dushkin has composed several small but effective pieces for 
the violin, and made a number of successful transcriptions and 

180 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


LlKE CARUSO'S tone among singers, so Elman's tone in the realm 
of the violin has been accepted as the standarcl by which violinists 
are measured. This child of the ghetto alone can produce that 
broad, wholesome, spiritual tone which is 
characteristic of his playing and is so 
representative of the spirit dominating 
the long-sufrering sons and daughters of 
his race. 

The late James Huneker, in his vol- 
ume of criticism and comment, Unicorns, 
with his inimitable raciness of style and 
bewildering glitter of erudition, devotes 
a chapter to "Violinists Now and Yester- 
year." Considering the fact that this 
ubiquitous critic had personally heard 
such violinistic giants as Vieuxtemps, 
Wieniawski, Wilhelm, and Joachim, and 
had list.ened to a host of virtuosi of this 
generation, his praise of the playing of Mischa Elman is all the 
more signifìcant. He writes: "United to an amazing technical 
precision there is a still more amazing emotional temperament, all 
dominated by a powerful musical and mental intellect that is un- 
canny. In the romantic or the virtuoso realm he is a past master. 
His tone is lava-like in its warmth. He paints with many colors. 
He displays numberless nuances of feeling. Naturally the pride 
of hot youth asserts itself, and often, self-intoxicated, he intoxi- 
cates his audience with his sensuous, compelling tone. Hebraic, 
tragic, melancholy, the boisterousness of the Russian, the swift 
modulation from the mad caprice to Slavic despair — Elman is a 
magician of many moods." 

Mischa Elman was born in Talnoye, Russia, on January 20, 
1892. His father was a Jewish religious teacher and amateur 
violinist, who early recognized the boy's musical talent and judici- 
ously encouraged it by giving him at the age of four a little violin. 
When he was twelve years of age, his father succeeded in bringing 
him to Odessa where he gained admission to the Imperial music 
school ; here f or some time he was taught by Alexander Fidelman. 
It was at that school that Leopold Auer, his future master, heard 
him play, and took him along subsequently to St. Petersburg. 

In 1904 we find Mischa the star pupil of Auer in St. Petersburg. 
It so happened that a much advertised young virtuoso, caiieci 
Vecsey, was to give a concert and Professor Auer was asked for 



his opinion of the artist's ability. "I have 
a pupil only twelve years old who is far 
superior," said Auer. This, naturally, 
was taken as a wild statement by all who 
heard it, and the news spread fast. Auer 
was determined to back up his remarks. 
He planned an opportunity for Mischa 
Elman to appear at the opening concert 
of the Deutsche Liedertafel — the most 
important musical society of the city. 
Auer was to play. At the last moment 
he sent word that he was too ill to ap- 
pear, but that his youngest pupil woulcl 
take his place. Consequently, Elman, a 
lad of twelve, played the Mendelssohn 

Concerto, Paganini's "Motto Perpetuo" and a Chopin "Nocturne" 
with such tremendous success that the audience refused to let him 
leave the stage until he had played half a dozen encores. The 
following day, the name of Mischa Elman was on everyone's 
tongue. After that important appearance the young virtuoso went 
in triumph from one city to another. Today he has played in 
practically every city on the globe. 

In speaking of his teacher, Auer, Elman has said : "I may call 
myself the first real exponent of his school in the sense of making 
his name widely popular to American audiences." Auer himself 
says in his reminiscences, regarding the episode with Vecsey: "In 
October Mischa left with his father for Berlin, ancì in spite of the 
vogue enjoyed by his competitor Ferenc Vecsey, his success was so 
overpowering, that Vecsey's manager left the latter in order to 
engage little Mischa, and a few months later had him make his 
Lonclon dèbut, after which Elman made the English capital his 
headquarters until the outbreak of the World War in 1914." On 
the occasion of his first London appearance, the Grand Duke Au- 
drey Vladimirovitsh presented the lad with a handsome diamond 
pin as a token of his appreciation. 

Elman fìrst played in the British Isles when he was only four- 
teen. He came there after his conquest of Eastern Europe as one 
of the world's supreme wonder-children. England, particularly 
London, was sceptical about these sensational reports, but after 
hearing the youthful master, it was captivated like the rest of 
Europe. Since that period, Elman has been a frequent visitor and 
the British have taken him to their hearts as they have done few 
foreign artists. On the occasion of his recent trip to London, 
when he gave a recital at the Royal Albert Hall, the largest audi- 
torium in the English capitol, Clarence Lucas, the renowned author 
and critic, had.the following to say: "Mischa Elman had an enor- 
mous audience in Albert Hall last Sunday afternoon. No other 

182 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

hall m London could have contained the Elmanites who flocked to 
Kensington s big music room to hear him pour f orth f rom his little 
btradivarius such a boundless flood of music. The journeys of his 
nngers up and down the tiny fìngerboard were as nothing com- 
pared with the miles his music flew in filling every part of the vast 
auditorium. And though the instrument was silent at the end of 
tne afternoon, many an echo of it will live in the memories of those 
who came under the spell of Elman's bewitching tones." 

Not only is Elman popular with the general public and with 
tne critics, but he is also a favorite with the British royal f amily. 

After his recital, he was commanded to appear before Queen 
A exandra widow of the late King Edward VIII, before whom 
Elman had made several appearances at Buckingham Palace 

Elman has played with the world's greatest conductors. He 
has the followmg episode to relate about Colonne, the famous 
l<rench conductor: 

( "I had an amusing experience with Colonne once. He brought 
his orchestra to Russia while I was with Auer, and was giving a 
concert at Pavlovsk. Colonne had a perfect horror of 'infant 
prodigies / so Auer had arranged for me to play with his orchestra, 
without tellmg him my age. I was eleven at the time. When 
Colonne saw me, violin in hand, ready to step on the stage, he 
drew himself up and said with emphasis: 'I pl ay with a prodigy! 
Never! Nothing could move him, and I had to play to a piano 
accompamment. After he had heard me play, he came over to me 
and said : The best apology I can make for what I said is to ask 
you to do me the honor of playing with the Orchestra Colonne in 
Paris. Four months later I went to Paris and played the Mendels- 
sohn concerto for him with great success." 

When Elman appeared in New York with the Russian Svm- 
phony Orchestra, under Modest Altschuler, on December 20 1908 
he played the now familiar concerto of Tschaikovsky, the difliculties 
of which melted under his agile fingers. It was said that the 
Tschaikowsky concerto was written for Auer, who considered it 
too difficult to play himself. Nevertheless, he showed Elman the 
secret of how to do it, and aided him in triumphing over it wher- 
ever he played it. On the occasion of Elman's dèbut in New York 
the music critic of the THbune wrote: 

^ " I1: A ar * ues 110 lack of appreciation for the Russian Symphonv 
Orchestra to say that the most interesting feature of the concert 
was the playing of Mischa Elman, the young Russian violinist, 
who made at this time his American dèbut. Elman passed through 
the prodigy period some years ago, and he now comes as a matured 
artist . The performance of the Tschaikowsky concerto was listened 
to with the attention it deserved, and it gained the genuine en- 
thusiasm of the large audience. Elman's tone is large and is also 
lull. His notes were produced with a precise faith to the pitch 



that was comforting to hear. . . . In the double stopping, his oc- 
taves, and especially the rapid passages, the violinist reached a 
lofty standard of proficiency, while his cantilena was admirable, 
full and sustained." 

"To hear Mischa Elman on the concert platform," another New 
York critic declared, "to listen to him play with that wealth of 
tone, emotion, and impulse which places him in the very foremost 
rank of living violinists, should be joy enough for any music lover. 
Tone, technique, temperament, intelligence, artistry, musicianship, 
are all combined in his work." 

Elman apparently liked the land that showered so much praise 
on him as much as its inhabitants liked him, and he decided to 
become one of them. On May 17, 1923, he received his fìnal citi- 
zenship papers, and became a naturalized American citizen. He 
is now a resident of New York. 

It would be unfair to speak of Elman and not mention his 
father's part in his successes. The debt that Mischa owes his 
father is beyond calculation. To the credit of Mischa be it said 
that he keenly realizes the obligation to which he stands to his 
father. "If," he says, "anyone deserves thanks for the pleasure 
of listening to my playing, it is fìrst of all my f ather, who cìid more 
than his means permitted to nurture and develop my talent, and 
to help me to occupy the place that is now mine. Thanks are also 
due my grandfather, and great-grandfather, from whom I have 
inherited a love for study and application. If my father is not a 
Mischa Elman himself it is undoubtedly due to the fact that the 
circumstances of his childhood were not such as he had himself 
created for me. Thanks are due him for the encouragement and 
inspiration he was ever ready to offer me." 

Mischa's paternal grandfather was the town fìddler, and, ac- 
cording to "Papa Elman" he was able to conjure forth from his old 
instrument tones like those of his famous grandson. This grand- 
father did not want his son (Mischa's father) to follow in his 
steps, for the humble position of town musician was looked down 
upon in those little ghetto communities in the pre-Mischa days. 
"Papa Elman," however, saw the thing in another light and wheth- 
er or not he knew that heredity in the third generation ahvays as- 
serts itself more strongly than in the second, he, for one, was de- 
termined to lay down his life for the advancement of his Mischa as 

On a summer's day in 1914, while visiting my mother in Leip- 
zig, I also paid a call at the Kochanski home. On that occasion, 
Paul Kochanski's father showed me a letter recently received from 
"Papa Elman," with whom he had a strong friendship. In that 
letter, the f ather of Mischa described his son's successes in London, 
and I remember that that letter was freely sprinkled with such 
expressions as "we made a great success"; "we were invited to 

184 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Buckingham Palace"; "we had wonderful reviews in the papers," 
6 A. -Z me 1 smiled the cynical smile of youth, for to- 
gether with a great many of the Elman intimates, I was under the 
impression that "Papa Elman" was exploiting his son's genius 
tor all ìt was worth. Only later, and with maturing years, did T 
learn to respect and love Mischa's father for utter self-effacement 
—somethmg akin to martyrdom— in his son's cause. 

«m? reminiscence s concerning Mischa and his father, Auer 
says: The next morning the father and son stepped into my room. 
Thefather said that he came from Odessa, where his son was at- 
tendmg the Music School. He also informed me that his pecuniary 
situation was very precarious, and that he was obliged to sell part 
of his wardrobe m order to be able to pay his fare from Odessa to 
Ehzabethgrad, a few hundred miles away. He added that he was 
prepared to make any and every sacrifice, provided his son was 
accepted for the St. Petersburg Conservatory . . » After hear 
ing the lad play, Auer wrote a letter of recommendation to the 
dnector of the Conservatory, the great Alexancìer Glazounoff, re- 
questmg him to enter little Elman in his class and to see that he 
was given a scholarship. 

"When I returned to St. Petersburg I found Elman installed in 

vpWH Sf 5S, f rega !I 1S hÌS father a11 SOrts of difficulties had de- 
ve oped The law authorized students of every nationality to re- 
side m the capita , but the same permission was not extended to 
their parents, unless they happened to be artisans who knew a 

^' a 5 e A° r WGre .! imply , workmen - 'Papa Elman' could not qualify 
n either capacity and he led a most precarious existence, remov- 
mg all evidence of his presence in the city of Peter the Great dur- 
mg the day, hidmg in various retreats known to him alone and 
spending his nights in the dirty, overheated, ancì airless janitor's 
quarters of the apartment in which he had rented a small room 
for his son. A petition signed by Alexander Glanzounoff to the 
only too famous Minister of the Interior, V. von Plehve, was SL 
nied Papa Elman/ exhausted and enervated by his furtive and 
unnatural mode of life, was in despair at being^bliged to leave 
the city without any idea of where he might take refuge One 
day he told me his troubles, and the office of the Conservatoire as 
sured me of the truth of his statement that the Ministe r ^ 
Interior had refused him the necessary domicilìary permission » 
"Four weeks after a personal visit to Plehve's resid^ncT" Aiier 
contmues, ;'I received a large envelope with an official seal. Plehve's 
secretary mformed me in the Minister's name that Tapa Elman' 

in the c - itai ^ h!s ~ 

Mischa Elman has long since become a favorite due to his ex 
cellent sonata playing, as well as his chamber music performance" 
In order to give a larger audience the benefit of his art n tWs 



branch of music, he organized the Elman Quartet, now famous 
in the United States. When a great artist enters the realm of 
ensemble playing, he has as much diffìculty in submerging his 
individuality as a small musician has in trying to make himself 
important. A great violinist is not always a happy leader of a 
string quartet, but Mischa Elman knew that he could enter the 
fìeld with three of the best available colleagues. Playing quartets 
is no novelty to him ; the only new f eature is giving the public 
opportunity to hear him. He has associated himself with those 
rare ensemble players, Edward Bachman, Nicholas Moldovan, and 
Horace Britt. The Mozart "Quartet in B flat," at the opening of 
the fìrst concert of this quartet, was thrilling in the beauty and 
simplicity with which it was played. The magical tone of the 
fìrst violin, the exquisite legato, lovely rounding of phrases, flaw- 
less intonation spelled Elman. There was moments in the Schu- 
bert "D minor Quartet" that seemed almost a prayer, and there 
joy and spring-like naivetè in the Haydn piece. The large audi- 
ence made Town Hall ring with applause. 

Since its fìrst concert, Mischa Elman's quartet has enjoyed a 
reputation rivalled by none of the quartets giving concerts in the 
United States, and provides series of regular concerts through- 
out the music season there. 

Elman owns an instrument of rare excellence. It cost him 
$50,000, and he claims he knows its history from the time it 
was manufactured in 1717. According to him, it belonged to the 
collection of Mme Recamier, a celebrated French leader of so- 
ciety exiled from Paris by Napoleon. In 1804 she is said to have 
sold it to Marshal Count Molitor, who distinguished himself in 
the Napoleonic wars. It remained in the Marshal's family until 
it passed to the dealer who sold it to Elman. It was Elman's third 

Mischa Elman has a letter, written by the late Czar Nicholas 
II in which the Russian ruler told the violinist to remain out of 
the war zone until the end of the conflict as "Russia does not wish 
any harm to befall one of her greatest geniuses." This is espe- 
cially interesting in contrast with his father's persecution by the 
police in St. Petersburg some years previous for the simple rea- 
son that he was a Jew. 

186 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


One of the greatest violinists of the nineteenth century was Ernst. 
Attracting attention principally as a virtuoso, Ernst had at the 
same time a broad musical education. He was a man of warm and 
impulsive nature; his playing was dis- 
tinguished by great boldness in the ex- 
ecution of technical difficulties of the 
most hazardous nature. His tone had a 
peculiar charm, and he was one of the 
most welcome performers in the concert 
halls of Europe. He was a thorough mu- 
sician and a good composer, though his 
works, "Othello Fantasy," "Concerto in 
F sharp minor," "Erl-Koenig," "Elegie," 
for example, are so full of technical dif- 
ficulties as to be almost impossible of per- 
formance. Indeed, it is said that some 
of them contain difficulties which even 
he with his enormous technique could not 
always overcome. 

Ernst was born May 6, 1814, in Brunn, Moravia. His education 
he received at the Vienna conservatory where Bòm was his teacher 
on the piano and Zeifrod in theory and composition. 

Paganini was at that time traveling through Europe. His 
matchless playmg made such an impression on Ernst that he was 
nllecl with a passionate desire to imitate in everything the Italian 
violmist. Deliberately or through some coincidence, he began to 
follow Paganini in his travels, and so he often met the great vir- 
tuoso. Ernst did not rest content with his adoption of some of 
Pagamm's artistic tricks, but actually memorized and played by 
ear some of Paganini's unpublished works, played only bv Patran- 
mi himself. 

Once Ernst visited Paganini and found him with a guitar in his 
hands, working on some composition. Paganini, noticing his 
guest, jumped up from his stool and hid his manuscript. "I have 
to look out not only f or your ears, but f or your eyes as well !" 

In 1832 Ernst settled in Paris where he studied hard under 
Beriot and frequently played in concerts. Like his idol Paganini 
Ernst made concert tours in France, England, Germany, Russia' 
Scandmavia and other lands, creating a furore everywhere. 

After 1844 he lived chiefly in England, where he was' highly 
appreciated, until the approach of his fatal disease made it neces- 
sary for him to give up, first, public perf ormances, and then, violin 



playing of any kind. He died at Nice, October 8, 1865, from spinal 
meningitis, after eight years of intense suffering. When Ernst 
cìied, a critic compared him with other players of his day in the 
following words: "Less perfect in polish, less unimpeachable in 
the diamond lustre and clearness of his tone than Beriot, Ernst 
had as much elegance as that exquisite violinist, with greater depth 
of feeling. Less audaciously inventive and extravagant than Pag- 
anini, he was sounder in taste. His music, with no lack of fantasy, 
was scientifìc in construction. The secret however, of Ernst's suc- 
cess, whether as a composer of virtuoso, lies in his expressive 
power and accent. There has been nothing to exceed these as ex- 
hibited by him in his last days. The passion was carried to its 
utmost point but never turned tatters." 

His "Carnival de Venice" will preserve his name for the coming 
generations. But the gem of Ernst's creative genius is his "F 
sharp minor concerto," a work wondrous in its beauty, and which 
puts in the background all his other work. 

Ernst wrote a string quartet, two nocturnes, Concertino, Polon- 
aise de Concert, Hungarian Airs and the magnifìcent violin piece 
"Rondo Papageno" which unfortunately is seldom pìayed. 


Louis Edlin, American violinist and chamber music player of rare 
excellence, was born in New York City on September 30, 1893, and 
began his violin studies under Arnold Volpe at the age of nine. At 
thirteen he appeared as soloist with the Young Men's Symphony 
Orchestra, and also with Duss's Band, in Madison Square Garden, 
New York. At the age of sixteen, he went to Paris to study with 
Remy. There he remained for two years, and then went to Berlin, 
there studying under Kreisler. Returning to America, he became 
concert master of the Russian Symphony Orchestra, and later con- 
cert master of the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra, which post he 
held for fìve years. While there he pften appeared as soloist with 
that orchestra in the larger mid-western cities. In Cleveland he 
organized the Cleveland String Quartet, and was a member of the 
Institute of Music in that city. 

In 1923, he came to New York, where he became a member of 
the New York Trio and member of the faculty of the Institute of 
Musical Art. Of his playing in that celebrated Trio, one reviewer 
said, in part: "Edlin is a far better violinist than one meets with 
ordinarily in a chamber music organization. . . . He plays with a 
fìrm and virile tone ; moreover, it is music with meaning that comes 
from his bow." 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


The organizer and director of the Franko Symphony Orchestra 
m New York, was born in New Orleans on July 23, 1861. He 
learned to play the violin in childhood, and at the age of eight 
toured the world with Adelina Patti. Like his brother, he went to 
Berlin, and there studied the violin under Rappoldi, De Ahna, 
Wilhelmj and Joachim. Upon the completion of his studies, he 
returned to New York, and entered the Metropolitan Opera House 
Orchestra. In 1883 he became concert master of that orchestra 
and from 1905 to 1907 was conductor there. 


Son OP Haman and Helene (nèe Berman), this eminent American 
violinist, teacher, composer, and executive, was born in New Or- 
eans, Louisiana on January 20, 1857. He went to Breslau, where 
he studied the violm under Blecha, and later went to Berlin, study- 
mg there with De Ahna. At the age of ten, he appeared in public 
with an orchestra m Breslau, and at twelve had his fìrst American 
concert at Stemway Hall in New York. In 1876 he returned to 
Berlm, resummg his violin studies, this time under Joachim, and 
studying composition at the same time with Hollaender until 1878 
when he went to Paris to study the violin with Vieuxtemps and 
Leonard until 1880. Upon the completion of his studies, he re- 
turned to New York, where he became leading violinist in 1884 in 
the Thomas Orchestra. 

From 1891 to 1897 Franko was principal viola player in the 
New York Philharmonic Orchestra. In 1883 he toured the United 
States ancì Canada as first violinist of the Mendelssohn Quintet of 
Boston, and from 1890 to 1893 gave chamber music concerts with 
his own orgamzation. In 1894 he organized the American Sym- 

1900 to 1909 he attracted much notice with his concerts of seven- 
teenth and eighteenth century music. In 1909 Franko went to 
Berlm where he continued these interesting series of concerts, 
and at the same time taught advanced violin classes at the Stern 
Gonservatory, and conducted the orchestra class. 

His works include "Meditation," "Lullaby," "Valse Gracieuse," 
a Fantasy on Korsakoff's 'Coq d'Or' for Violin," and others 

Franko was awarded the Art and Science medal in Germany 




IN this era of decaclence, the art and personality of a musician like 
Carl Flesch is to be doubly welcomed. Flesch today stands at the 
zenith of his art. He is an individual, one of those who can say I. 

As an artist, Flesch is a pronounced 
personality, a seeker after beauty. He has 
a Hedda Gabler soul, one, however, which 
will not "die for beauty," but will live 
and work for beauty. Like A. Wilhelmj, 
he is the personifìcation of perfection. 

Carl Flesch is very modest, yet he is 
a brilliant personality. He combines the 
sound thinking usually attributed only 
to a legal mind with the sensitivity of 
the artist. He is thoroughly human, and 
although he thinks only of music when 
he is making music, he is not so wrapped 
up in his particular accomplishment as 
to lack a broad interest in life in general. 
Like a good physician, he has a manner that inspires confidence, 
and one of the eccentricities which we might expect a great violin- 
ist to manifest. Above all, he has a sense of humor. He writes 
very well, and his articles and books on music are marked by a 
crisp, entertaining style. In fact, he is a genius who manages to 
be human at the same time. 

Carl Flesch was born in Moson, Hungary on October 9, 1873. 
He began to play the violin at the age of six, receiving his first 
formal instruction three years later. At the age of ten, he was 
sent by his parents to Vienna to study. Five years later he was 
graduated from the Vienna Conservatory. From Vie,nna he went 
to Paris, studying with Sauzay and Marsick, and won fìrst prize 
at the Conservatory in 1894, starting on his public career a year 

The remarkable gifts and accomplishments of the young violin- 
ist at once made him a favorite, and in 1897 he was appointed 
court violinist to the Queen of Roumania, also becoming professor 
at the Royal Conservatory. After fìve years, Flesch again went 
on tour, and in 1903, became professor at the Amsterdam Con- 

Flesch has been heard in every part of Europe and has made 
two tours in America. His fame has spread, not only as an ex- 
ecutant and as a preceptor, but also as the author of several works 
on violin playing, one of which, now published in America, is al- 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ready acknowledged to be a stanclard work. The appearances of 
this master, now at the height of his striking powers, are musical 
events welcomed by all who appreciate and enjoy violin playing 
which combines complete technical mastery and virtuosity with 
authoritative and sensitive understanding and appreciation. 

Flesch returned to America in 1924, and appeared with the 
Philharmonic, Philadelphia, Boston, Cincinnati and Chicago Sym- 
phony Orchestras. He also gave recitals in many parts of the 
country, all of which intensifìed the impression which he had made 
on his fìrst visit some ten years earlier. Carl Flesch has come to 
be looked upon in America as a paragon in the realm of violin 
musicianship. He is a master, and his audiences are composed of 
the musical and intellectual èlite that the country affords. This 
great artist arouses human and divine dreams. It is life that is 
speaking, and its words are music, the music of Flesch's violin. 
In his programs are reflected the characteristics of their maker.' 
They are full of beauty, serious and yet not heavy. And they are 
performed with the skill that is not an end in itself but a perfect 
means of expression. 

So many young violinists from all parts of the world have been 
anxious to study with Flesch that he has been unable to deny him- 
self completely to pupils. In 1924 he accepted the post of head 
of the violin department in the Curtis Institute of Music in Phila- 
delphia, where his colleagues are Josef Hofmann, Marcella Sem- 
brich, and Leopold Stokowsky. Among his pupils are Alma 
Moode, William de Boer, Josef Wolfsthal, and many others. 

While in Berlin, in 1921, Flesch joined Hugo Becker a'nd Ar- 
thur Schnabel in forming an eminent trio. Nor did he neglect his 
love for chamber music in America, for soon after his arrival 
there he formed in 1925 the Curtis Quartet, an organization that 
is already active and popular. 

Carl Flesch has published : Basic Studies, and the fìrst part of 
an extensive educational work, The Art of Violin Playing He 
also edited 'Kreutzer's Studies, Caprices of Paganini, Mozart's 
Violin Sonatas, and the concertos of Beethoven and Brahms. 




Frederic Fradkin, appointed concert master of the Boston Sym- 
phony Orchestra in 1918, was the fìrst American to be honored 
with this position. Fradkin's achievements in the musical worlcl 
have been remarkable. Born in Troy, 
New York, in 1892, he began the study 
of the violin at thei age of five, fìrst with 
Jarow, and later with Sam Franko, L. 
Lichtenberg, and Max Bendix. At the 
age of nine he was soloist with the Am- 
erican Symphony Orchestra. Three years 
later, Fradkin went to France, starting 
his studies with G. Remy and later en- 
tering the National Conservatoire in the 
class of A. Lef ort. Here he received the 
fìrst prize, the only time an American 
violinist has been so distinguished. Af- 
ter serving as concert master in Royan, 
France, with the Bordeaux Opera Com- 
pany, and later with the famous Louis Ganns Orchestra at Monte 
Carlo, Fradkin continued his studies with Ysaye. He later ap- 
peared with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, and was the 
last soloist to play under the late Gustav Mahler. Fradkin has 
also appeared as soloist under Lòwe, Ronald, Rabaud, Monteux, and 

After touring England in 1911 and 1912, Fradkin accepted the 
post of concert master at the Wiener Concert Verein in Vienna. 
The outbreak of the war in 1914 found Fradkin again visiting 
England. Later, during the season of 1914 and 1915 he was con- 
cert master with the Russian Symphony Orchestra of New York. 
The following two years he was concert master with the Diaghileff 
Ballet Russe, joining the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 1918. 

Fradkin's tone is silk, supple and lustrous. It bends to every 
modulation, every inflection of the piece in hand. It answers quick- 
ly to every beat of rhythm. It is artful in light and shade. 

In 1922 Fradkin accepted the post of concert master with the 
New York Capitol Orchestra, remaining there till 1924. 

192 Famous Mttsicians of a Wandering Race 


Samuel Gardner was born in Elizabethgrad, Province of Kher- 
son, Russia in 1891. But he considers himself an American, for his 
family, fleeing from the pogroms, brought him to America when 
he was a child. They settled in Prov- 
idence, Rhode Island. He has received 
his entire musical training in America. 
Gardner began the study of violin at the 
age of seven with Wendelschaffer, and at 
nine placed himself under Loeffler, to 
whom the young violinist and composer 
is much indebted. Next he studied with 
Winternitz, and at the age of fìfteen, 
studied under Franz Kneisel in New 
York. His teacher in composition was 
Percy Goetchius of the Institute of Mu- 
sical Art. 

Samuel Gardner, who is now one of 
the most promising young American 
composers, as well as an excellent violinist, believes that stricter 
methods should be used in handling inspiration. He believes in 
paying more attention to its plainer sister "work" and by this 
method bringing the spoiled beauty to terms. 

In 1918 Gardner's "String Quartet in D minor" was awarded 
the Pulitzer Prize of $1,500 by Columbia University. Gardner 
also received the Loeb Prize of $500 for a Symphonic Poem for 
Orchestra. This poem, entitled "The New Russia" has been played 
by such leading orchestras as the Philadelphia Orchestra, with 
himself as soloist, and the Stadium Concerts Orchestra. 

Gardner has also written a violin concerto, which he performed 
with the Boston Symphony. During the season of 1924-25 he 
played the Mendelssohn "Concerto" with the New York Philhar- 
monic under Mengelberg, and on March 27 and 28 of 1925, played 
his own concerto under the same leadership. 

Gardner made his formal debut in New York as a violinist in 
1918, and during the same year was for some time first violinist 
of the famous Letz Quartet, while Mr. Letz was in service dur- 
ing the war. 

Gardner's "String Quartet" was performed by the celebrated 
Flonzaley Quartet and many violinists are using his solo com- 
positions in concert. "Four Preludes," "In the Rockies," and 
"From the Canebrake" are among the most popular compositions 
by this versatile young violinist and composer. 




Charles Gregorovitsch belongs to the number of the great Rus- 
sian musicians of the newest virtuoso violin school. He was one 
of the most gifted violinists of our time. His frecment concert 
tours in Europe and America made him 

world famous. 

Charles Gregorovitsch was born in 
St. Petersburg (Leningrad), on Oc- 
tober 25, 1867. His teachers were Vas- 
sily Bessekirksy, Henry Wieniawski, 
and later in Vienna, Jacob Dont and 
Joseph Joachim. His father, however, 
must be considered his very first teach- 
er, as is the case with Heifetz and Elman 
and Piastro. Wieniawski considered 
Gregorovitsch his best pupil, and was so 
impressed with the boy's great promise, 
that on first hearing him, he ottered to 
take him as a pupil, gratis. Wieniawski 

once said to him: "If I did not know I was Wieniawski, I would 
think that you were Wieniawski \" 

Few violinists have had the advantages that have fallen to 
the lot of Gregorovitsch, principally as regards great teachers. 
He was highly honored in Russia, where the Czav granted him ex- 
emption from military service, and he was decorated by the King 
of Portugal. He made his fìrst London appearance in 1897 at the 
Queen's Hall Symphony Concerts. Gregorovitsch was remarkable 
for his broad tone ancì for the smoothness and finish of his playing. 
He has often been compared to Sauret and Sarasate. 

Like Anton Rubinstein, Brodsky, Joachim, and Auer, Gregoro- 
vitsch was considered one of the most talented interpreters of 
chamber music. His name was later connected with his leader- 
ship in the famous Mecklenburg Quartet (which bore the name of 
its patron, the Duke of Herzog Mecklenburg) . The other members 
of this famous quartet were Kranz, second violin; Makaleinikoff, 
an excellent viola player; and Butkevitsch, 'cellist. 

Due to some political misunderstanding, Gregorovitsch was 
arrested by the Soviet government officials in Vitebsk in 1921, and 
confìned to jail. There he fell sick of typhoid fever, and died. 
Thus came to an inglorious and untimely end the life of one of the 
world's greatest and most gifted violinists. 

194 Famous Mus icians of a Wandering Race 


Ti-ie distinguished violinist and concert master of the Chicago 
Symphony Orchestra, was born in Odessa, Russia, on March 7, 
1898. He attended the Imperial Conservatory, his instructor being 
Franz Stupka, at present conductor of 
the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra. A 
prize pupil of the Conservatory at the 
age of thirteen, young Gordon demon- 
strated his unusual artistic mettle and 
entered upon a professional career. Af- 
ter a successful concert season on the 
European Continent he came to New 
York, where he further perfected him- 
self under the masterly guidance of 
Franz Kneisel. 

In New York City Gordon made a 
number of successful appearance, includ- 
ing chamber music recitals with such 
artists as Harold Bauer and Benno 
Moiseivitch. He was also a member of the famous Berkshire 
String Quartet. 

The position of concert master of the Chicago Symphony Or- 
chestra was proffered Gordon by Mr. Stock, after an exhaustive 
scrutiny of the available violinistic material in America and 
Europe. The wisdom of this choice has been more than justifìed. 
Gordon's commanding mastery as soloist has won the unanimous 
and enthusiastic approval of the musical public and the press. 

In the course of his artistic career, Gordon preformed many 
new works of European and American composers. Among others, 
he gave perf ormances in America of Respighi's "Concerto Gregor- 

iano," Kodaly's "Quartet for Strings," and many others. Gor- 
don's original compositions and transcriptions are published in 
New York by Carl Fischer. 

Jacques Gordon is a virtuoso violinist minus eccentricity and 
plus a most engaging modesty and simplicity of demeanor. He is 
far more worthy his honors as soloist than many male and female 
artists in these days of many violinists. 

He also formed a string quartet in 1921, which bears his name. 




Jakob GrÙN is famous principally for his pedagogical activities, 
though he was an excellent violin virtuoso as well. He was born 
on March 13, 1837 in Budapest. His teachers in Vienna were El- 
linger and Josepf Boehm in violin. He 
studied composition principally in Leip- 
zig under Hauptmann. From 1858 to 
1861 he played in the Royal Orchestra of 
Weimar, and from 1861-65 in the 
Queen's orchestra in Hanover. After 
his concert tours through Germany, 
Hungary, Holland and England, Grùn 
was appointed in 1868 concert master 
in the Vienna Royal Opera, where he re- 
mained for a considerable time. 

In the early sixties Grùn attracted at- 
tention because of a confiict that arose 
on his account, in which Joachim, then 
concert master in Hanover, was con- 
cerned. This is the story: Joachim reported to his master, Count 
Platen, that Grùn, then a court musician, was worthy of a place in 
the court chamber orchestra, whose members, unlike the ordinary 
musicians of the orchestra, were entitled later in life to a pension. 
Platen objected, saying that to admit a Jew to a government post 
of that kind would be contrary to the wishes of the king and 
against the laws of the land. On Joachim's objection that his own 
Jewish religious belief did not stand in the way of his obtaining a 
life contract under Count Platen, the latter replied that Joachim's 
conversion to Christianity had made this argument invalid. Joa- 
chim was highly insulted at the insinuation that he had changed 
his religious belief for purely material reasons. The letter sent 
to his master on August 23, 1864 needed no comment. In that let- 

ter Joachim declared, among other things: "With my views on 
honor and duty, in order to vindicate myself, there remains only 
that I, together with Grùn should leave you. If I should remain 
af ter Grùn's dismissal, I would not be able to combat within myself 
the feeling that I owe my privileged position in the Hanover or- 
chestra to my change in faith, leaving my fellow-Jews to occupy a 
humiliating position." 

To settle this musico-Jewish argument, King George V in- 
vented for Grùn the title of "Kammer-virtuoso." This came as a 
great and sudden honor to Grùn, but as the title given him did not 
entitle him to a pension, Joachim declared he was not satisfìed 
with the solution, and on February 25, 1865, handed in his resigna- 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Mishel Gusikopp, who was in 1926-27 fìrst concert master of the 
Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski, was born of 
Russian parents in New York City, twenty-nine years ago. His 
father gave him his fìrst lessons in vio- 
lin; he later continued his work with 
Formanoft'. But the greater part of his 
artistic training was gained under Franz 
Kneisel. At the age of twenty-one he 
was engaged as concert master of the 
Russian Symphony in New York City, 
and toured the country with that organ- 
ization. He was also heard on a num- 
ber of occasions as assistant artist with 
the Russian String Quartet. 

In 1917 Gusikoff went to St. Louis 
to assume the post of concert master with 
the St. Louis Symphony, succeeding Al- 
, , . bert Stoessel. Since then he has played 

each year as soloist with this organization at its subscription and 
popular concerts. He also made several appearances in recital and 
concert in St. Louis each year, does considerable chamber music 
recently 1 ^ vlolmist of the String Quartèt organized there 

nf i G Q9n k0ff i made h Ì S - NeW York dèbut at Carnegie Hall in October 
t' a lf, Ve mS SeC ^ d recital the foll °wing year at Town 
Hall In 1925 he was soloist with the St. Louis Symphony Or- 
chestra under Rudolph Ganz on its tour of the South and South- 

7Z tV " t Pri1 °! ìlì 1 he reSÌgned fr ° m the Philharmlìt or- 
chestia and accepted the mvitation of Walter Damrosch to be his 
concert master for the New York Orchestra, effective October, 


Arthur Hartmann noted Hungarian violinist, was born in Matè 

and at'thP llgaiy p *\ He Btudied under Charles Loe ff le ^ 

and at the age of twelve knew practically the whole modern violin 



■repertory. Having been a chilcl prodigy, 
his earliest appearances were with Saint- 
Saèns, Guilmant, Hans Richter, develop- 
ing to the latter-day associations with 
Debussy, Sinding, Sjògren and others. 
The concertos of Saint-Saèns and Godard 
were given by the young violinist, with 
the composers, in Paris; the Beethoven 
with Hans Richter and so on. He has 
been heard in almost every part of the 
world and is widely known also for his 
compositions and transcriptions. Of the 
latter, over one hundred are published 
and they are played and recorded by 
Kreisler, Elman, Rènèe Chemet ancl 

He has written the choral work "At the Mid-Hour of Night," 
various piano-pieces, about twenty songs, two melodramas, the 
discovery and editing of six sonatas by Giardini, Instinctìve 
Method for the Violin, etc. As a performer on the violin, Hart- 
mann is specially noted for a pure tone, splendid technical ability, 
and musicianly interpretation. Each season since 1925 he has given 
the public another demonstration of his many-sided artistry in a 
series of quartet concerts. He can claim the unique distinction of 
having had three such pre-eminent composers and conductors as 
Ernst von Dohnanyi, Eugene Goossens, and Alfredo Casella appear 
with him as pianists in the interpretations of their own chamber- 
music works. 


David Hochstein was born in Rochester, New York, one of 
America's important music centers. The city is the home of the 
Eastman Institute, as well as of a symphony orchestra of high 
standing. This city has honored its citizen, David Hochstein, by 
naming one of its music schools after him. 

Hochstein was born on February 16, 1892. He studied the 
violin at the Vienna Royal Academy, under Leopold Auer and 
Professor Sevcik, winning a scholarship at the Meisterschule. He 
was also awarded the First State Prize. 

Hochstein made his dèbut in Vienna in January, 1911, and 
later, cluring the same year, visited London with Sevcik. He toured 
England, the Continent and the United States. Hochstein com- 
posecl several numbers for the piano. 

This fìne virtuoso and pedagogue was killed in France during 
tbe World War. 

198 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


TllE greatest technical genius of the violin of the present day is 
undeniably Jascha Heifetz. He is the technician par excellence 
since Paganini and Wieniawsky. His style is of the utmost refìne- 
ment and he invests everything he plays 
with a classical purity of line and love- 
liness of tone. 

Jascha Heifetz was born in Vilna, 
Russia, on February 2, 1901. From his 
earliest days he showed a remarkable re- 
sponsiveness to music and seemed to 
take instinctively to the violin. He be- 
gan to play it at the age of three, when 
he was presented with a small violin by 
his father (also a violinist), who spent 
his time teaching his remarkable son. 
At the age of fìve, Jascha entered the 
Royal School of Music at Vilna, where 
jascha iicifetz at Scvc, he studied uiider Malkin, and was gradu- 
ated before he was eight years old. He made many appearances 
m pubhc ìmmediately following his graduation, and was every- 
where regarded as one of the greatest wunderkinder the age has 

Regarding Jascha's meeting with his future master, Leopold 
Auer who has so influenced him and his career, Jascha's father 
tells the f ollowing interesting story : It happened that at that time 
(the boy was about nine years old), Auer was on tour with the 
famous piamst Mme Essipova, and Vilna was included in their 
tour Malkin, Jascha's fìrst teacher, a fòrmer pupil of Auer, came 
to the hotel to meet his master. He brought his little pupil to 
mtroduce to the grancl maitre. Before he got a chance to rest from 
his long journey, Malkin eagerly assailed him with pleas to 
hear his pupil, but the master, fìrst because he was tired and 
secondly, which is the greater reason, because he had a peculiar 
and deep-rooted distrust, bordering on antipathy, for wuncler- 
lander. Malkm nevertheless insisted. He kept on shouting "but 
master, , this youngster you must hear!" After a long pestering 
which fìnally beat down Auer's resistance, he consented to give 
Malkin s favorite pupil a hearing. 

Jascha played the twenty-fourth << Capriccio ,, of Paganini and 
Mendelssohn's <, Concerto. ,, Auer was astounded. His eyes opened 
wide and his face flushed with wonder. It was clear that the boy's 
talent made a deep impression on the veteran of many "hearings " 

Violinists 199 

Macle happy by the great master's deci- 
sion to admit the boy to his classes, the 
father sold his meagre belongings, gave 
up his post as violinist at the theater (his 
sole source of revenue) and with the 
small sum realized, took the child to St. 
Petersburg. Arriving in the capital, 
they went direct to Auer's house from 
the railroad station. But a great disap- 
pointment awaited them. The master 
had apparently forgotten his meeting 
with Jascha in Vilna, and thought this 
was a new wunderkind. In a rage he 
told the parent that the Conservatory ex- 
aminations were over and it was too late 
to admit the boy. Private lessons could not be arranged as the 
father, being a Jew, had no legal right to live in the capital of 
Holy Russia. Pupils at the Conservatory had the legal right to 
reside there. 

Heifetz' position can easily be imagined. Only one thing was 
left for him to do, and that was to take his son and return to 
Vilna, where, alas, someone had already replaced the father in the 
orchestra. But Leopold Auer was not without a heart, and after 
a consultation with Glazounoff, then director of the Conservatory, 
they arrived at this decision : The boy should enter the Conserva- 
tory, but since Auer's classes were already fìlled with pupils who 
had qualified at the regular examinations, the boy should be en- 
tered temporarily, for the current semester, in the classes of Auer's 
assistant, Nalbandjan, until the beginning of the following sem- 

The father remained happy with this decision, as it offered at 
least the hope of the boy's entering Auer's classes in the near 
future. But a new and greater disappointment awaited both father 
and son. Jascha, upon his enrollment in the Conservatory, was 
granted the right to reside in St. Petersburg, but not so his father, 
who was ordered by the police to leave the city at once. Again 
Glazounoff interfered and saved the situation. 

Auer thus describes the episode in his reminiscences : " Jascha 
Heifetz, then ten years old, was admitted to the Conservatory 
without question in view of his talent; but what was to be done 
with the family? Someone hit upon the happy idea that I admit 
Jascha's father, a violinist of forty, into my own class, and thus 
solve the problem. This I did, and as a result the law was obeyed, 
while at the same time the Heifetz family was not separated 
(soon after this had happened, the other members of the family, 
the mother and two daughters arrived in that city) ; for it was 
not legally permissible for the wife and children of a Conservatory 

Famous Musicians of a WandeHng Race 

pupil to be separated from their husband and father. However 
since the students were, without exception, expected to attend the 
obhgatory classes in solfeggio, piano and harmony, and since "papa 
Heifetz most certainly did not attend any of them, and did not 
play at the examinations, I had to do battle continually with the 
management on his account. It was not until the advent of Glaz- 
ounoff, who knew the true inwardness of the situàtion, that I had 
no further trouble in seeing that he remain in his parent's care 
until the Summer of 1917, when the family was able to go to 
America. ,, 

Jascha Heifetz thoroughly realizes the great debt he owes his 
father for the many sacrifìces he has laid on the altar of his genius. 
Furthermore, it must be stated that the Heifetzes did not exploit 
■ their child's talent to their own gain, as is the case with so many 
other parents of child prodigies, but saw to it, on the contrary, 
that the boy received an all-around education before entering the 
world of artists. 

Jascha Iieifetz himself realizes the advantage of the thorough 
trainmg he received during those years at the Russian capital. 
'When I was studying at the Conservatory in St. Petersburg," 
he says, "we were not considered properly taught if we knew only 
our own instruments. We violinists, for instance, had to study 
piano, and of course viola. We were required from time to time 
to play in different sections of the orchestra, for the benefìt of our 
sight reading, and we had to know the theory and technique of 
performance in duets, quartets and all forms of musical ensemble. 
Languages were emphasized, too, especially for the singers. They 
had to know Itahan in addition to Russian, and two more besides 
that: French and German, or French and English. I think I was 
with Professor Auer about six years, and I had both class lessons 
and private lessons with him, though toward the end my lessons 
were not as regular." 

Heifetz made public appearances at a very early age before 
coming to St. Petersburg, and everywhere he visited he was hailed 
as the coming genius of the violin. It happened that in the 
Summer of 1911 he was engaged to play soli at an exhibition in 
Odessa, where a symphony orchestra performed under the direc- 
tion of Wolf-Israel and Pribick. I happened to be the fìrst solo 
celhst of that orchestra. 

Heifetz arrived there unheralded and unknown, but after his 
first three appearances his name fairly rang through the crowded 
streets of the Black Sea port, the young boy becoming overnight 
the ìdol of the population. After his third appearance Heifetz 
was invited to play as soloist at the concert for the benefìt of the 
Odessa students, who during their vacation were employed as 
ticket choppers at the various theatres in the city. That was on 



the fìrst of September, 1911. The author, who was also one of 
the soloists at that concert, remembers the huge crowd of over 
28,000 that Heifetz drew to the big open-air arena, and the mad 
demonstrations of the throngs, who nearly killed the prodigy with 
their uncontrolled adoration. 

The child's god-like playing and cherubic face so hypnotized 
them that each one of them was eager to see and touch the chosen 
one of the gods. The people refusecì to leave the grounds. Little 
Jascha, his parents and two younger sisters could not pass out by 
the artists' quarters since all exits, windows' as well as doors, were 
blocked by a raving undulating crowd. The family was nearly 
suffocated with fright and lack of air. I succeeded in summoning 
a whole police division, and with its help rescued the family from 
the over-enthusiastic attentions of the audience. Hiding Jascha 
under my cloak, I broke through the surging crowds, but someone 
saw the child's face, and we were seized and overwhelmed, and 
the boy was exposed to view. In the grand frenzy we were separ- 
ated f rom the other members of the f amily, and had to search f or 
them until late into the night. In the meanwhile, the parents, who 
had to force their way through a different exit nearly died of 
anxiety over Jascha's fate, until they found that he was safe. 

In 1914 Jascha Heifetz made his Berlin dèbut, on which occa- 
sion the great Nikisch declared that he had never heard his like. 
There followed a large number of engagements in Europe's great 
centers, but these were all cancelled when the war broke out. 
Portunately, the family succeeded in returning to St. Petersburg 
in December of the same year, and the boy was able to resume 
his studies at the Conservatory. 

In the Summer of 1916 the Heifetz family went with Auer to 
Christiania. "The name of Jascha Heifetz was totally unknown 
to the great mass of the public there," says the grand mattre in 
his book My Long Lifq in Music. "Yet his manager discovered in 
the library of one of the most important Christiania dailies a Berlin 
article of 1914 which gave a very enthusiastic account of Heifetz' 
sensational dèbut in that city at a symphonic concert conducted 
by Arthur Nikisch. It had been written by a Norwegian musician 
of high repute who happened to be in Berlin at the time. This 
article, coming from an altogether unprejudiced source, aroused 
the interest of the public to such a degree that the house was en- 
tirely sold out when Heifetz gave his fìrst concert, and the same 
held good for his succeeding ones. . . . His numerous concerts 
were given turn and turn about with Toscha Seidel. Every seat 
in the house was always filled by an enthusiastic audience. . . . 
One newspaper remarked, 'Toscha, Jascha, Jascha, Toscha — when 
will our own artists get a chance? ' " 

The Heifetz family came to the United States in 1917 by way 
of Siberia and Japan. Jascha made his American dèbut October 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

27, 1917, at Carnegie Hall, New York, with sensational success. 
His second recital was solcì out weeks in advance, and he gave six 
recitals in New York that winter without once repeating his pro- 
gram. Ever since he made his American dèbut, and was consid- 
ered the greatest discovery in a generation by the New York 
press, he has wanted to become an American citizen, and on Feb- 
ruary 3, 1925, the fìrst steps toward fulfìlling this wish were taken 
at the Naturalization Bureau in New York City. 

Great as a wunderkind, Jascha Heifetz is also great as a man. 
He ìs no longer the boy-wonder in velvet iacket and long curls. 
He ìs now a man of the world, a student of affairs, and a connois- 
seur of art and literature. In his New York studio apartment, 
surrounded by rare books purchased in London, Berlin, Paris, 
Tokio and Sydney, and his collection of Oriental curios, rugs 
carvings, and unusual decorations, the distinguished violinist works 
and receives his many visitors. A lover of light effects, he has 
them so arranged that he can at will get the desired effect to fit 
the various moods of the evening. 

Probably no other living musician has received such unanimous 
and unqualified praise as Heifetz. Regarding his fìrst appear- 
ances in America, Leonard Liebling, the New York critic, said : 

"Jascha Heifetz' violin wizardry thronged Carnegie Hall at his 
afternoon recital. This modern young Orpheus seems to do all 
the thmgs with a violin which the fabled charmer accomplished 
with a lyre. Heifetz remains unapproached in the perfection of 
his fìnger and bow manipulation, the refined wistfulness of his 
tone, and the unique appeal of his apparently impersonal relation 
to his playing." 

Hardly a critic failed to appreciate his pure, limpid style and 
perfect technique, or to note the profound appeal he made to his 
huge audiences. 

Jascha Heifetz remains, in spite of all the tributes paid him, 
the modest man he always was. He says, "I admit that I have a 
naturally reserved exterior. But since when must one's heart be 
worn on one's sleeve? And who says that temperament must be 
expressed in mannerisms and eccentricities? I am not indifferent 
to the public. If I were, I shouldn't oifer the programs I do. 
Naturally, the program that an artist whose life has been devoted 
to music would choose for his own pleasure does not quite cor- 
respond to that which he presents to a public picked from all 
walks of life. But I sincerely believe myself the servant of that 
public, and I carefully choose numbers which I think will please 
them. For years I played the Ave Maria, because the people loved 
it. Audiences are improving all the time, I watch their rise and 
model my programs accordingly." Nevertheless, externally cool 
and reserved as Heifetz may appear to some, he is capable on 



occasions of lighting up with that clivine fire that characterizes 
his playing. 

Jascha Heifetz, prince of violinists, continues to gain honors. 
The Continental public of Europe delights in the fact that the 
child prodigy has more than fulfìlled his promise. The Sociètè 
des Concerts du Conservatoire of Paris has recently conferred 
membership upon him. Since itKwas founded in 1828 only three 
other musicians have been macleJ'Honorable Members." They are 
Plante, Busoni, and PaderewskiA. After his Paris concert with the 
Conservatoire Orchestra in 1926, under the baton of Philip Gau- 
bert, he was presentecl with a gold medal and a diploma. In his 
apartment there are countless medals, gold ancl silver wreaths, 
as well as many works of Orientals given him in the Far East as 
expressions of appreciation. 

In April of 1926, Heifetz gave a series of fìve concerts in 
Palestine, the entire proceeds being donated to the fund for the 
proposed National Conservatory in Jerusalem. Previous to his 
departure for the land of his forefathers, Heifetz played in Spain, 
the royal family being present on the occasion. 

Heifetz was also awarded membership in the French Legion 
of Honor of France. 


Sandor Harmati, violinist, chamber music player and conductor, 
was born on July 9, 1892 in Budapest, Hungary. He is the son of 
Maurice and Sophie (nèe Fròhlich) . Sandor received his academic 
education at the high schools and at 
Teachers' College. He studied violin at 
the Royal Academy of Music in Budapest 
with Jeno Hubay, and composition with 
Hans Koessler. In 1909 he became con- 
cert master of the Budapest Symphony 
Orchestra, and in 1910 concert master of 
the People's Opera Orchestra in the same 

Sandor Harmati came to America in 
1914 and the following year became a 
member of the Letz Quartet. In 1915 
he assumed the conductorship of the 
Women's Orchestral Club in New York. 
He later held similar positions with the 
Symphony Society of Morristown, New Jersey, and other organiza- 
tions. In 1922 he organized the Lenox String Quartet. He was 
awardecl the 1922 Pulitzer Traveling Scholarship for his symphonic 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

poem. A string quartet by him was awarded a prize by the Phila- 
delphia Chamber Music Association in 1925. 

Harmati played under the most famous conductors of our 
time, such as Strauss, Dohnanyi, Weingartner, Loewe, Pierre Mont- 
eux, David Popper, and others. At the age of twenty he toured 
Europe as conductor, having assumed the baton when the con- 
ductor was taken suddenly ill. 

In 1924 Harmati was engaged to conduct the Omaha Symphony 
Orchestra. Its main objective is civic service and its activities 
have been carried on without outside aid, fmancial or otherwise. 

Harmati has written other compositions besides the two men- 
tioned. "Little Caprice" and "Caprice Espagnole," for violin and 
piano, are among his best known works. 


The NAME of Misca Hauser is seldom mentioned in these days 
of great violinists, and yet it was once known all over the world. 
No virtuoso of his time traveled more extensively, and few created 
more enthusiasm than Hauser. As at 
one time Liszt, Paganini, Rubinstein, 
and Ole Bull inspired their audiences, so 
this Hungarian fìddler and composer, 
born in Pressburg, Hungary in 1822, 
won laurels over the whole vast expanse 
of the earth. He was a pupil of Bòhm 
and of Mayseder at Vienna, and also of 
Kreutzer and Sechter. 

As a boy of twelve Hauser made an 
extensive and successful concert tour. 
In 1840 he toured Europe, and ten years 
later went to London, and thence to the 
West Indies and the United States, where 
. ne created a sensation, being a member 

ot the company of Jenny Lind. He afterwards visited San Fran- 
cisco, where he got himself into difflculties on account of the beau- 
tiful dancer, Lola Monte. He also visited South America (Lima, 
Santiago and Valparaiso). He then proceeded to the Sandwich Is- 
lands, where he played before the royal family and all the dusky 
nobles. He produced an extraordinary effect on them, and they 
fìnally decided that he could pipe on the wood as well as any bird. 
He was particularly honored by Queen Pomare herself. He be- 
came a hero at Otaheite, but was obliged to continue on his jour- 
ney. He next visited Australia and Turkey, where he played be- 
fore the sultan. 



Hauser had many amusing stories to tell of his travels, espe- 
eially of his experience in the Sandwich Islands, Turkey, Cairo and 

Hauser was the possessor of a great technique and there was 
something characteristic ancl charming in his tone and manner- 
isms which were especially pleasing to the fair sex. Some of his 
compositions, named by him "Hungarian Rhapsodies," and which 
belong to the salon genre, are still to be found on concert pro- 
grams. He used to play these exquisitely. 

Hauser lived in retirement in Vienna after concluding his 
travels, and died on December 9, 1887, practically forgotten. 


THERE ARE, as is known, seientific ancl musieal dynasties. There 

are the Scalligers, Bachs, Rubinsteins, Mendelssohns, Damrosches, 
etc. Among these gifted families belongs the name of Hollaender. 

Gustav Hollaender occupies an honored 
place among contemporary violinists, 
although he seldom plays in public since 
accepting the post of head of the violin 
department of the Stern Conservatory in 

Gustav Hollaender was born on Feb- 
ruary 15, 1855, in Lochschutz, Upper 
Silesia. At the Leipzig Conservatory, 
his principal teacher was Ferdinand 
David, and at the Berlin Hochschule the 
great Joachim. He began his career as 
musician with the Berlin Court Orches- 
tra. In 1877 he was invited to teach 
violin at the Kullac conservatory. From 
1871 to 1881 he organized chamber music soirèes, together with 
Xavier Scharwenka and Heinrich Grùnfeld at the Berlin Sing- 

His uncommon talent and technical accomplishments as soloist 
'caused Hollaender to be invited to Koln in 1881 as concert master 
and violin teacher. He organized the Koln String Quartet which 
included also Emil Bare (second violin) , Joseph Schwartz (viola) , 
and Friedrich Griitzmacher, Jr.. ('cellist). This quartet concertized 
with much success in Germany, Italy, the Scandinavian coùn- 
tries, and elsewhere. 

From 1894 Hollaender was at the head of the Stern Conserva- 
tory, where he again organized a quartet, including Willy Nick- 
ing, Heinrich Brandler, and Leo Schrattengold. When the last 

Famous Music ians of a Wanclering Race 

two withcìrew, they were replaced by Walter Rappelman and Anton 
Hecking. Hollaender wrote several salon pieces. 

Victor Hollaender, brother of Gustav, born in 1866, is a very 
talented composer. He is known for his operas, "Carmozinella," 
"The Bay of Morocco," and others. Since 1901 he has been the 
director of the Metropolitan Theatre in Berlin. 


Bronislaw Huiìerman, the distinguished violinist, was born on 
December 19, 1882, at Czenstochova, near Warsaw. His father 
was an established barrister in Warsaw, who gave up his practice 
when his son was ten years old in order 
to devote himself to the cultivation of 
his genius. He received his fìrst lessons 
from Michlowicz, a teacher in the Con- 
servatory, and at the age of seven, per- 
formed Spohr's "Second Violin Concer- 
to," besides taking the leading part in a 
quartet by Rode. After a short course of 
lessons under Isidore Lotto, he was taken 
by his father in May, 1892, to the Berlin 
Conservatory, where he studied for 
eight months under Joachim. He made 
public appearances in Amsterdam in 
1893. During the same year he played 
in Brussels and Paris. Charles Gregoro- 
vitsch was also among his fìrst teachers. 

In the Polish Count Zamoiski, Huberman found a patron, who 
made the boy a gift of a valuable old violin. 

Pìaying in London in May of 1894, he attracted the notice of 
Adehna Patti, who introduced him the following year to an Aus- 
trian audience, and engaged him to play at her farewell concert 
m Vienna on January 12, 1895. At this concert he made a sensa- 
tion, and attracted the favorable notice not only of the capricious 
Viennese public, but also of Brahms and the critic Hanslick. He 
made tours through Austria, Italy, Germany, Russia, America and 

In 1896, the venerable Brahms had learned to his great indig- 
nation that Bronislaw. Huberman, then a boy prodigy, was to play 
his "Concerto"— a difficult violinistic feat. He determined 
to attend the concert and at the end administer a stern rebuke for 
such presumption. The forbidding presence of the famous com- 
poser in the audience did not make the boy nervous, but instead 
fìlled him with an intense desire to play his best. The difficulties 



of the first movement were easily surmounted. Brahms' look of 
disapproval graclually disappearecl, and at the close of the "Con- 
certo," he drew out a hanclkerchief and wiped his eyes. After the 
concert he hurriecl to the artist's room, 
warmly embraced young Huberman, 
and said, "You are a genius, my son." 

From that day Huberman's career 
as a master violinist was assured. His 
great successes (particularly in Rou- 
mania, where he often played for Queen 
Carmen Sylva) became universal. Hc 
was given the title of "Roumanian Court 

Huberman is a writer of distinction 
as well as one of the world's foremost 
musicians. PIis books and articles on 
musical topics are well known. His vol- 
ume on the violin entitled From the Vir- 
tuoso's Workshop has had a great vogue, 

"""" and is considered one of the standard 

works on technique. Many leading periodicals in England, Ger- 
many, France, Italy, and Hollancì have published his articles on 
various phases of musical art. 

An incident of his Italian journey was his engagement by the 
municipality of Genoa to play on Paganini's Guarnerius violin in 
one of the Chambers of the Town Hall — an honor he shares with 
the late Camillo Sivori. This took place on May 16, 1903. 

An unusually personality is Huberman. He is always friendly 
and affable, but the real spirit of the man is delicate. He is a 
good companion, and his interests are by no means limited to 
music. He is a reader and philosopher. Human events and human 
thoughts always interest him, and he has a real sense of humor. 

In the Spring of 1923, when he played in Vienna, the Neue Freie 
Presse remarked: 

"The fìfth concert of Bronislaw Huberman was sold out. That 
signifìed a triumph without equal. Artists who can attract the 
public on a warm June night are not too numerous. Huberman 
had the power to do this. His violin playing has a legenclary 
lustre, his tones a clear beauty, an infatuating sensuousness. The 
noble breadth and ardent interpretation bewitched all. Artists like 
Huberman are the elect and f avored of f ate ; they shine like stars." 

On the occasion of his return to Carnegie Hall in New York 
on October 17, 1924, Henry Edward Krehbiel of the Herald-Tri- 
bune wrote: "Huberman's technique is remarkable, his execution 
superlatively facile." W. S. Henderson noted that "he played 
with dash, incisiveness and brilliancy." 

208 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


The pamily of Sascha Jacobsen, the violinist, can trace music in 
its bloocl from its earliest recollections. For at least three genera- 
tions back, every member of the Jacobsen family, both on the 
paternal and maternal branches, have 
played some musical instrument. Some 
have reached professional attainments, 
others a high clegree of amateur profì- 
ciency. Sascha's father is an excellent 
'cellist, his mother is as conversant with 
music as an amateur can be, his brother 
is a pianist, one sister a pianist, another 
a violinist. But this musical talent found 
its highest expression in Sascha who, 
since childhood, showed great musical 
gifts. He justified all the prophecies 
made for him by famous artists and by 
his teachers. 

Sascha Jacobsen was born in Helsing- 
fors, Finland, on December 11, 1895. He spent the fìrst eleven 
years of his life partly in Finland and partly in Leningrad. 

At the age of eight, Sascha began to prepare for the class 
which had become the mecca of all violin aspirants. But the Rus- 
sian Revolution intervened, and at the age of eleven the boy found 
himself in America. Soon after, he became a member of another 
famous violin class, that of Franz Kneisel. In 1915 his famous 
teacher pronounced him ready for public appearance. 

Since that time, Jacobsen has toured the country extensively, 
played in all the large and small centers, and became a favorite 
with phonograph owners as well. He possesses a marvelous tech- 
nique, his runs are always clear, and his intonation is almost be- 
yond reproach. He has temperament, but not to such an extent 
as to mar his playing or drive beauty from his tone. He has 
youth, a beautiful artistic outlook and a rare love of his art. 

In sonata recitals Jacobsen has been associated with such cele- 
brated pianists as Mischa Levitzki, John Powell, and Leo Orn- 
stein. He has been soloist with the New York Symphony Or- 
chestra under Walter Damrosch, with the New York Philharmonic 
Society under Stransky, with the Philadelphia Orchestra under 
Stokowsky, with the Metropolitan Opera House, etc. 

On the death of his former teacher, Kneisel, in March of 1926. 
Sascha Jacobsen was invited to succeed him as head of the violin 
department of the Institute of Musical Art in New York. 




Joseph Joachim, one of the world's great violinists, was born on 
Jime 28, 1831, in the village of Kittsee, Hungary, within the small 
radius which has produced three other great musicians — Haydn, ' 
Handel, and Liszt. He began to study 
the violin when barely fìve years old, 
when he was placed under Servaczinski. 
Later his parents took him to the Vienna 
Conservatory, where he studied tmder 
Joseph Bohm for two years, 1839-41, 
after which he went on Bohm's advice 
to Leipzig. Due to Ferdinand David's 
friendly help, he met Mendelssohn and 
played in a concert of Madame Viardot. 
While in Leipzig he also took lessons 
from Hauptmann and Mendelssohn. 
The latter took a particular interest in 
the boy. On one occasion he said to his 
parents: "You need not worry about 
your son. I will also be his relative, will play with him myself, 
and be his advisor." A few months following Joseph's arrival in 
Leipzig, he appeared at the Gewandhaus concerts as a fìnished 
artist, and played Ernst's "Otello" fantasy. 

Musical Leipzig was at that time under Mendelssohn's influ- 
ence, as was the rest of the civilized world. For a boy of twelve 
to appear at the hallowed Gewandhaus concerts and earn, not only 
the applause of the audience, but also the praise of the all-powerf ul 
critics, was something very extraordinary. But even greater 
honors fell to the lot of the wonder-boy the following year, when 
he assisted at a Gewandhaus concert in a concertante of four 
violins in which Ernst, Bazzini, and David took part. 

In 1845 Joachim went, together with Mendelssohn, to London. 
At his fìrst appearance with the Philharmonic Orchestra, he at- 
tracted attention by his excellent interpretations of Beethoven's 
"Concerto." Upon his return to Leipzig, he met Ludwig Spohr, 
whose acquaintance had a wholesome influence on him. His f riend- 
ship with Clara Schumann, with whom he often played, was also 
valuable to him. 

Joachim visited England again in 1847, and from then on so 
frequently, that he became one of the regular features of the 
musical life of that country and was highly honored there. In 
1849 he made his fìrst appearance in Paris, at an orchestral con- 
cert given by Berlioz. Liszt, who had heard of Joachim's rapidly 
increasing reputation, invited him to come to Weimar and lead the 

210 Famous Mzisicians of a Wandering Race 

orchestra which he conducted. Joachim accepted, and remained 
in Weimar for two years. 

Of particular importance at that period was his friendship 
with Hans von Bulow, Max Bruch, Raff, Hermann, Grimm, Franz 
Liszt, Rubinstein, Remeny, and others. In 1854 he went to Han- 
over, accepting there a contract for the position of concert director 
of the Queen's Concerts. This assured his economic independence. 

He was in high favor with King George V of Hanover. Re- 
maining there for twelve years, he met and married Amalia Weiss, 
a celebrated contralto singer. 

In 1869 he was appointed director of the Hochschule fur Musik 
in Berlin. On that occasion he received the honorary title of the 
"King's Professor." That same year he was elected member of 
the Berlin Royal Academy of Art. During the many years of his 
connection with the Hochschule, Joachim's personal influence was 
exerted upon a large number of pupils. Almost every well-known 
violinist of our time has been to Berlin to receive advice and in- 
struction from him. Among the innumerable players he has per- 
fected are: Betty Schwab, Gabrielle Wietrowitz, Marie Soldat- 
Reger, Gustave Hollander, Willy Hess, Jeno Hubay, Leopold Auer 
(the latter two having since become the greatest violin teachers 
the world has ever known), Henri Petri, Karl Halir, Charles Greg- 
orovitsch, Kamervirtuos Ecksher, the famous Professor Mar- 
seck, Tivador Nashez, and many, many others. 


William Kroll, violinist, was born in New York City on January 
30, 1901. His father was a violinist, and gave the boy his first 
instruction on the instrument when he was but four years old. 

At the age of ten . he went to Berlin,' 
where he studied for three years at the 
Hochschule under Marteau. At the out- 
break of the war, Kroll returned to New 
York where he continued his lessons un- 
der Kneisel from 1916 to 1921. He was 
graduated from the composition class at 
the Institute of Percy Goe.tschius. In 
1923 he became a member of the South 
Mountain Quartet sponsored by Mrs. 
Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge. 

He then joined the famous Elshuco 
Trio on the recommendation of its 'cell- 
ist Willeke, and is still a member of that 
organization, giving frequent concerts in 
New York and adjacent territory. 




Of the many younger artists who have blazed their way into pro- 
minence, Paul Kochanski is perhaps the foremost. Musical critics 
say that he is one of the very few interpretive artists who approach 
a musical composition from the stand- 
point of sincerity and truth. He does 
not seek to dazzle, when to do so would 
interfere with the spirit of that parti- 
cular part of the music. There is a 
musically aristocratic point of view in 
his approach to the music he presents, 
a finer grain in his playing, a distinc- 
tion that separates him from the many. 
His tone is wonderfully pure. He has a 
solid technique and a G string that vi- 
brates without metallic rasping. 

Paul Kochanski has entertained many 
of the best-known rulers and imperial 
families of Europe, among them those 
of Spain, Belgium, and the late Czar and Czarina of Russia. 

Born on August 30, 1887, in Orel, Russia, Paul Kochanski 
received his first tuition in violin playing from his father. When 
his family removed to Odessa, Paul was immediately admitted to 
the class of Emil Mlynarsky at the Conservatory of that town. 
His extraordinary talent enabled him to complete his studies at 
the Conservatory at the age of twelve. After his brilliant success 
it was stated in the press that not since the foundation of the 
Conservatory had there been so remarkable a talent as Kochanski 
among the pupils. In consequence, Mlynarsky, on being appointed 
director of the Opera of Warsaw, took his pupil with him to that 

The time Kochanski spent in Warsaw was a period of unin- 
terrupted triumphs. In 1900 the Warsaw Philharmonic Society 
was founded, and Kochanski was appointed first soloist. Two 
years later he went to Brussels to continue his studies at the Con- 
servatory under the celebrated Thomson. There he obtained the 
fìrst prize with the greatest distinction. He was the protègè of 
the Belgian nobility and especially of the Countess of Flanders, 
who after his concert personally congratulated him upon his phen- 
omenal playing. Kochanski then appeared in Antwerp, Liege, 
Paris, and other cities, and thereafter made a tour through Spain, 
Greece, Egypt, and Turkey. 

212 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In Spain he was commanded to appear before the Royal f amily. 
The Infanta Isabella of Bourbon presented him with her signecl 
portrait and some jewelry. In 1909 Kochanski returned to War- 
saw, where he was appointed Professor at the Conservatory, stay- 
ing there for two years. He then appeared in Berlin, Leipzig, 
Vienna, Glasgow, and Edinburgh. Kochanski's London recitals 
were so successful that the press hailed him as one of the greatest 
violinists of our time. 

His engagement as professor of the Warsaw Conservatory was 
followed by a similar appointment at the St. Petersburg (Lenin- 
grad) Conservatory as successor to Auer. He held this post from 
1915 to 1918. 

Late in 1919, he gave several recitals in Warsaw and appeared 
fourteen times with the principal orchestras of Poland. In the 
fall of 1920 he returned to London, the scene of his dèbut thirteen 
years before. Leaving a profound respect earned by four recitals 
and appearances with the London Symphony Orchestra under Al- 
bert Coates, Kochanski came to America in 1921 at the invitation 
of Walter Damrosch, conductor of the New York Symphony Or- 
chestra. His life has been full of work, adversity, war, and art; 
but he came through triumphantly to win new glories in a new 

Probably few artists have given more recitals in as many dif- 
ferent places as Kochanski. He possesses, besides his genius for 
the violin, a mentality of a high order, an ingratiating person- 
ality, seriousness toward art, lofty idealism, reverence for the best, 
sound training, studious habits, experience, and self-mastery. 

Paul Kochanski is also a conductor of excellent ability. In 1910 
he conducted the Warsaw Philharmonic in Mayrenhoff, near Riga, 
for a period of three months. 

On March 19, 1926, Paul Kochanski gave his second and last 
recital of the season at Carnegie Hall, New York, when he intro- 
duced a new suite by Igor Stravinsky. The composer finished the 
suite last September and the unpublished score, which is dedicated 
to Kochanski, is in his possession. The title of the work is "Suite 
Après des Thèmes de Pergolesi," and as heard that evening it 
has five movements in dance poems. 

Not only did Stravinsky decìicate this manuscript to Kochanski, 
but he furthermore handed over to him the rights for its execu- 
tion, thus allowing him to retain a priority for two years, during 
which time no other violinist will be allowed to play it. 

Paul Kochanski has two younger brothers, Elli,'a 'cellist, and 
Joseph, a pianist. The former, with whom the writer stuclied 
under Klengel, showed remarkable genius for his instrument, ancl 
at that time displayed great promise of a brilliant career as vir- 
tuoso. His technique was indescribably facile. In 1924 Elli 



settled in Warsaw, where he is professor at the Conservatory, and 
fìrst cellist at the Warsaw Philharmonic. 

Like his two older brothers, Joseph is a talented pianist, having 
studied under Wendling at the Leipzig Conservatory. For some 
time he was assistant professor to Kreutzer at the Berlin High 
School of Music. His musical achievements have brought him a 
tribute from the Far East, where he was invited in 1925 to 
accept the post of piano professor in Tokio, Japan. 

On May 3, 1927, Poland conferred on him the order of the 
Legion of Honor. 

Paul Kochanski's wife, the daughter of a famous Warsaw jurist, 
resembles her famous husband in many respects. 


Hats ofp! The King comes! And his name is Fritz Kreisler! 

So universal is Kreisler's genius that he may be called the King 
of Violinists. His appeal is so wide that he draws his audiences 
from all ranks and classes. 

It was said that Paganini's playing 
was a magic of the devil. Kreisler has 
a fìner magic — the magic of entire self- 
subordination. Before his tone listening 
becomes a spiritual faculty. No other 
violinist so melts the listening mind, ear 
and heart into a common pleasure, a sub- 
limated and suffusing sensuous delight. 

Kreisler did not become famous over- 
night. His growth from a modest be- 
ginning was steady and unaided by 

The author of this volume well re- 
members the empty halls that resounded 
to Kreisler's inspired playing on the few occasions when he heard 
this superb master, still without a name, and was enchanted by 
him; in Leipzig (1907), and later in St. Petersburg (1910 or 

To quote his own words : "From the age of 20 to 27 I struggled 
hard for recognition. I played every bit as well then as I do now, 
but people cìid not understand it." 

Fritz Kreisler was born in Vienna on February 2, 1875. For- 
tunately for the boy, his father, one of the leading physicians in 
Vienna, was also an amateur musician of talent. He instructed 
and encouraged his son to such good purpose that Fritz appeared 
at a concert given in Vienna by Caiiotta Patti, the singer (sister 

214 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

of the more famous Adelina), when he was only seven years old. 
Then he entered the Conservatory of Music, where he was a pupil 
of Hellmesberger. He was so young that he had to get special 
permission to enter the Conservatory, for as a rule pupils were 
not admitted before the age of fourteen. He justified the opinion 
of his teachers by winning the gold medal for violin playing at 
the age of ten. Kreisler then went to Paris, where he studied at 
the Conservatory under Massart and Delibes. He achieved an- 
other remarkable success by winning the gold medal at the age 
fss=ss^sss=sssssssss=ì of twelve. His competitors, of whom 

there were about forty, were all over 
twenty years old. 

He then appeared in several German 
cities and during the same year he macle 
his first tour of America, playing with 
the pianist, Moritz Rosenthal. He was 
regarded as a youthful prodigy. Many 
predicted that his talent was being "burnt 
out." He returned to Vienna to complete 
his general education at the Gymnasium, 
took a course in medicine, studied art in 
Paris and Rome, and then entered the 
army and became an officer of the re- 

serve cavalry. 

Kreisler was in Switzerland at the outbreak of the war. On 
July 31, 1914, without waiting for a summons, he started for 
Graz, the heaclquarters of his regiment. In the middle of August 
he was sent to the front. He was in the thick of the fìghting 
against the Russians in Galicia. On the night of September 6, 
the trenches were rushed by the Cossack cavalry. Kreisler was 
severely wounded by a lance, and was left for dead in the trenches. 
Toward morning, however, his orderly crept to the trench and 
carried him back to the hospital. Two weeks later he was sent to 
Vienna, and was fìnally discharged from military service, not, how- 
ever, before he had receivecì a medal of honor and promotion. In 
his books, Four Weeks in the Trenches ancl My Oton War Story, 
Kreisler related his war experiences. 

Returning to America in 1915, Kreisler resumed his concert 
tours, but when the United States entered the conflict, objections 
were made on the grounds that he was an alien. He cancelled his 
engagements and retirecl into private life until the end of the war, 
when he resumed his career and found his popularity even greater. 

Kreisler's student days were rather stormy. It was hard work 
to drive him to practice, and he frankly owns to having resorted 
to every kind of device to escape from the hated fìddle, just as 
Collini abhorred his flute. 



"I was only seven when I attended the Vienna Conservatory," 
he says, "and I was much more interested in playing in the park, 
where my chums waited for me, than in taking lessons on the 
violin. And yet some of the most lasting musical impressions of 

my life were received there. Some very great men played at the 

Conservatory when I was a pupil there. There were Joachim, 
Sarasate in his prime, Hellmesberger, and Rubinstein, whom I 
heard play the fìrst time he came to Vienna. I really believe that 
hearing Joachim and Rubinstein play was a greater infiuence in 
my life, and did more for me than five years of study. 

"I have worked a great deal in my life, but have always found 
that too large an amount of purely technical musical work fatigued 
me and reacted unfavorably on my imagination. As a rule only 
practice enough to keep my fingers in trim;. the nervous strain 
is such that doing more is out of the question. And for a concert 
violinist, when on tour, playing every day, the technical question 
is not absorbing. It is more important for him to keep himself 
mentally and physically fresh and in the right mood for his work. 

"Sincerity and personality are the first main essentials. Tech- 
nical equipment is something which should be taken for granted. 
The virtuoso of the type of the Ole Bull, let us say, has disap- 
peared. The modern virtuoso, the true concert artist is not worthy 
of the name unless his art is the outcome of a completely unified 
nature. I do not believe that any artist is truly a master of his 
instrument unless his control of it is an integral part of a whole. 
The musician is born — his medium of expression is often a matter 
of accident. The true musician is an artist with a special instru- 
ment. And every real artist has the feeling for other forms and 
mediums of expression, if he is truly a master of his own. I 
fìrmly believe that if one is destined to become an artist the tech- 
nical means find themselves. Too great a manual equipment often 
leads to an exaggeration of the technical and tempts the artist to 
stress it unduly. Technique to me is a mental, not a manual thing. 
A technique whose controlling power is chiefly mental is not per- 
f ec t — I say so frankly — because it is more or less dependent on 
the state of the artist's nervous system. Yet it is the only kind 
of technique that can adequately express the musician's every 
instinct, wit and emotion. Every other form of technique is stiff, 
unpliable, since it cannot entirely subordinate itself to the indi- 
viduality of the artist." 

Kreisler has composed "Caprice Viennois" and other pieces for 
violin, cadenzas to several concertos and to Tartini's "Devil's 
Thrill"; arranged a number of classical and modern pieces for 
violin solo and written a "String Quartet in A minor," and num- 
erous other works. Kreisler's transcriptions and arrangements 

216 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

for the violin are masterpieces of their kind ancì appear regularly 
on the programs of all leading violinists of the day. 

Regarding his work as composer, he says: "I began to com- 
pose and arrange as a young man. What I composed and arranged 
was for my own use, reflecting my own musical tastes and pre- 
ferences. In fact, it was not till years after that I even thought 
of publishing the pieces I had composed and arranged. For I was 
very diffident as to the outcome of such a step. I have never 
written anything with the commercial idea of making it pay- 

Kreisler is not only a violinist ; he is a fìrst-rate pianist as well 
as a composer. His famous operetta "Apple-Blossom" (New York, 
1919) is a melodious and picturesque work which was produced 
with great success. He has also done invaluable work in reviving 
the compositions of the Italian and French masters of the seven- 
teenth and eighteenth centuries. 

Kreisler's programs usually include works of Bach, Mozart, and 
Gluck, the French miniaturists, Couperin and Cartier, Pugnani, 
Corelli, or Tartini. Not within memory of modern times has a 
violinist given more genuine musical satisfaction than Kreisler. 
He has intellect, blood and brawn, can be forceful, sombre, or play- 
f ul as the mood of the piece demands it. His playing of Beethoven's 
"Concerto," for example, is like an inspired prophesy. 

In November of 1.902 (when in England), Kreisler married 
Miss Harriet Lies, an American. Kreisler's home is the haven of 
all who need help or succor. In spite of his enormous earnings, 
Kreisler is not rich. This is attributed to the fact that a whole 
group of talented children at the Vienna Conservatory are com- 
pletely dependent on his support. 

Fritz Kreisler's brother, Hugo, is a well known 'cellist, a mem- 
ber of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. 


Lotto was born December 2, 1840, in Warsaw. 

He studied violin under Massar and composition with Zeber. 
Lotto concertized all over Germany and other countries, and every- 
where delighted his audiences with his technique and bravura. 

In the fìeld of polished French technique, Lotto realized 
its maximum possibilities. In this respect he was outshone by no 
one. His faultlessness in the art of conquering all difficulties, his 
double flageoletti, his wonderful staccato, which only Wieniawsky 
cpuld execute with equal perfection, impressed his audiences so 



much that in Leipzig for example, he had to give four concerts in 
one week, instead of the single one planned. 

In 1862 Lotto received the title of the Archduke's soloist, and 
Kamer-virtuos in Weimar. Some time later he was invited to teach 
violin at the Warsaw Conservatory. There he unfortunately fell 
sick with typhoid, and for several years had to discontinue all 
artistic and pedagogic activities. Recuperated, he returned to 
Warsaw, where he remained for the rest of his life. 


Ferdinand Laub was born on January 19, 1832, in Prague, the city 
that has given the world so many other great musicians. His violin 
playing was brilliant and technically perfect, and always created 
a deep impression. He toured practically 
all over the woiid. 

At the age of six, he could play the 
variations of Beriot; at nine he made 
a concert tour through Bohemia. He 
studied in the Prague Conservatory un- 
der Moritz Mildner. From early child- 
hood he was patronized by people of 
high rank, such as Archduke Stephan, 
who presented the young violinist with 
an excellent Amati violin and gave him 
recommendations to Vienna. In thal 
city Laub gave several concerts, creat- 
ing a furore. He was unusually well 
received also in Paris and London. In 
Paris he had among his followers, Berlioz, Ernst, and others. 
Laub led a romantic lif e, having no permanent residence. In 1853 
he came to Weimar, taking Joachim's place at the local music 
school ; two years later, he became teacher at the Stern Conserva- 
tory, Berlin, soon winning the position of concert master and 
Kammer-virtuoso in the court orchestra, where he remained until 

In 1864 Laub, together with Charlotte Patti, Alfred Joell, and 
the 'cellist Chermann, made a concert tour through the Nether- 
lands and South Germany. In 1866 he was fìrst teacher of the 
violin class at the Moscow Conservatory and fìrst violinist at the 
local music society. This dicì not, however, prevent him from 
continuing his musical journeys. 

He died on March 17, 1875, in Griz, near Bozen. 

218 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Lea Luboshutz was born in Odessa, Russia, on February 21, 
1888. She is the daughter of Saul and Gittl Luboshutz. Her 
father, a violinist, gave her her fìrst lessons at the age of five. 

At six she gave her fìrst concert at a 
pupils' recital in Odessa. At the age of 
ten, she entered the Odessa Music School, 
studying under Mlynarsky. Three years 
later she was heard by Wassily Safonoff, 
who took her to the Moscow Conserva- 
tory of Music, where at the age of six- 
teen she received a gold medal and the 
gift of an Amati violin from the Con- 

Her adult career began with an or- 
chestral tour through Poland, Germany, 
and France under Artur Nikisch, Was- 
sily Safonoff, and others. The Russian 
Symphony Orchestra, Mocìest Altschuler 
conducting, invited her to come to America to play with them. 
She came, but returned in three weeks, due to her husband's 
insistence. Upon returning home she played in a concert of twenty 
of the best violinists in Moscow, and won the prize. Later she 
began studying with Ysaye in Belgium. 

Lea Luboshutz played at the court of the Romanoifs, and for 
the King and Queen of Belgium. 

She appeared in concerts under such famous conductors as 
Mlynarsky, Lamoreux, Koussevitzky, Dohnany, Glazounoff, 
Cooper, Rene Baton, et cetera. In her concert tours she traveled 
through Germany, France, China, Japan, the United States, and 
many other countries. In 1921 she appeared as soloìst with the 
Berlin Philharmonic orchestra and with the Pasdeloup orchestra 
in Paris. During the following four years she was professor of 
violin at the Berlin and Paris Conservatories. 

Lea Luboshutz is a player of vitality and a mistress of many 
moods. She has great technical skill, a broad tone, and much per- 
sonal and artistic charm. Her style is fluent, brilliant and finished, 
and she has a sure musicianly understanding of the music she plays. 

During her 1925-26 American appearances she was warmly 
and enthusiastically greeted by audiences and the press, receiving 
many favorable reviews. "Mme Lea Luboshutz," said the Phila- 
delphia Bulletin, "a Russian violinist of remarkable talent, gave 
a recital in the Academy of Music last evening, which was one of 



the high spots in the musical seasons of Philadelphia. She playecl 
a most difficult and exceptionally varied program, with an artistry 
which places her extremely high among women violinists of the 
present day. She possesses a beautiful tone of great power and of 
equal sweetness, and plays for the music rather than for the effect 
pyrotechnics will produce." 

Together with her sister Anna, a 'cellist, and her brother Piotr, 
a pianist, Lea organized a trio, concertizing with much success in 
Europe. Anna was a pupil of von Glenn, receiving the gold medal, 
while Piotr studied with Shumnoff. Lea Luboshutz's second son, 
Boris, is a gifted piano pupil of Kreutzer, who has recently been 
his mother's accompanist. 

On November 21, 1926, Lea Luboshutz appeared as soloist with 
the State Symphony Orchestra in New York, giving a fìrst per- 
formance of Prokofìeff's "Violin Concerto." She played the diffi- 
cult score with brilliance and a fìne tone distinguished for its 
purity of accent and intonation. She was an ideal interpreter for 
the work, presenting its many interesting points with great 

She was invited to be a member of the Faculty at the Curtis 
Institute of Music, in Philaclelphia, effective September of 1927. 


"Let your pen fly; you can't overdo it. This boy puts us all to 

These words were spoken by the assistant concert master of 
the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra when Yehudi Menuhin, at 
the age of six, swept San Francisco off its feet by his playing as 
soloist for the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. His superb 
technique, his musical comprehension, and his warmth of tem- 
perament brought down the house. 

A short time later the little fellow gave another demonstra- 
tion, at his own recital in San Francisco, of his almost uncanny 
powers as violinist. Many of the audience were so enthusiastic 
over the child's playing that they broke into some of his numbers 
with thunderous applause. Yehudi's poise at these outbreaks was 
that of a seasoned soloist. The fìrst number was Vieuxtemps' 

"Fantasia Appassionata." Then he gave two encore pìeces, 

Tschaikowski's "Chant sans Paroles" ancì Victor Herbert's "A la 
Valse." When he played the Mendelssohn "Concerto" he con- 
vinced even the hardened music critic, Redfern Mason, of his 
genius, as is evidenced by the following which appeared in the 

220 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

newspaper the next day: "His conception of what the music means 
was so ripe, the manner of its production so artistic that, if the 
player had been invisible, we could have thought that we were 
listening to the playing of a proved mas- 

ter. I thought of Joachim who, when a 
lad, left his boat in the bathtub, dried 
his hands, to play this same work for 
Mendelssohn himself, and was publicly 
embraced by the composer. I think Men- 
delssohn would have done the same to 
Yehudi if he had heard him last night." 
Then Yehudi played Paganini's "Moto 
Perpetuo." The audience gasped at the 
speed of this number so masterf ully ren- 
dered and with so much feeling. 

Zimbalist, the great and mature vio- 
linist, said that the nearest approach to 
Yehudi's playing that he has come across 

anywhere was Heif etz at the age of nine. Yehudi was seven years 
old at the time. Mischa Elman and other well-known artists are 
astonished at the boy's playing and unusual mentality. His teacher, 
Louis Persinger, former concert master of the San Francisco 
Symphony, and now with the Chamber Music Society of San Fran- 
cisco on its tour through the East, writes in the Violinist of Au- 
gust, 1925: 

"People have been kind enough to 'blame' me for creating 
some of the mature understanding and musical richness of Yehudi's 
playing, but it is all within the boy himself and I am happy to be 
the guide who takes him along the good path." 

Yehudi is not the usual type of heralded genius. From the 
description of his conquests as rendered above, one is frequently 
prepared for the picture of this genius as a "dark, slight, serious 
boy, of sallow complexion from hours indoors, and with an adult 
expression." But he is a chubby, blue-eyed, red-cheeked young- 
ster with a profusion of blonde hair and a winning smile. 

Yehudi is the oldest of three children of Mr. and Mrs. Moshe 
Menuhin. His father is superintendent of the Jewish Educational 
Society of San Francisco. His mother was born in the Crimea and 
has father in Palestine. They were married in New York, where 
both were attending university. Upon being graduated, the couplo 
decided to follow a famous American's advice and "go west." 
Their destination was San Francisco, where they have since lived. 

Yehudi's successes in New York have been remarkable. Mrs. 
J. Casserly, of New York and San Francisco, herself a prominent 
music lover, presented Yehudi with a valuable Stradivarius violin. 
The forty guests who came to do honor to little Yehudi included 



the Damrosches, Goldmark, Britt, and others of prominence in the 
world of music. They were amazed to hear such playing by a 
lad of eight. So pronounced has been Yehudi's success that he 
gave his first eastern recital in tht Manhattan Opera House. 

So marked is his fame that the Symphony Society of New York 
engaged young Menuhin as its soloist for two concerts in Novem- 
ber, 1927. 

He was born in New York City on January 22, 1917. 

(See addeiida for additional facts.) 


David Mannes is known in the United States for two things; 
fìrst, the Mannes School of Music, founded by himself in New 
York, of which he is director and owner; second, his directorship 
and conductorship of the Metropolitan 
Museum of Art Saturday Evening Free 
Concerts in the same city. Further- 
more, Mannes is the founder and di- 
rector of the Music School Settlement 
for Colored People in New York. The 
David Mannes School of Music holds a 
place in the pedagogic fìeld in America 
second to none. The Metropolitan 
Museum Concerts, given every Saturday 
night between January fourth and 
March fourth of each year, are financed 
by philanthropical New Yorkers. The 
orchestra is drawn from the New York 
Symphony Orchestra. 
To the spacious halls of the great Museum six to eight thousand 
people come to listen to the music of the great masters. Mannes' 
programs often include Tschaikowsky's "Sixth Symphony," Beetho- 
ven's "Fifth," the symphonies of Schumann, Dvorak, and many of 
the works of Wagner and Bach. 

This famous American violinist and pedagogue was born in 
New York City on February 6, 1866. His teachers were Carl 
Richter, John Douglas, in New York, De Ehna and Halir in Berlin, 
and Ysaye in Brussels. In 1891 Mannes was "discovered" by 
Walter Damrosch, who appointed him to the last stand of the New 
York Symphony Orchestra's violinist section. 

The young musician moved rapidly towarcìs the front stands, 
and seven years later became concert master, keeping his post 
with much honor until 1912. From 1902 to 1904, Mannes gave 
chamber music concerts with his own organization, and some time 
later founded the Symphony Club, of which he was conductor. 

222 Famous Musicians of a Wanclerìng Race 

In 1898 he married the talented pianist, Clara Damrosch 
(daughter of Dr. Leopold Damrosch and sister of Walter Dam- 
rosch) . Within two years af ter their marriage, they became f a- 
mous for their joint sonata recitals, which they gave for several 
seasons ih and around New York City. 

He has for the past seven years been supervisor of music at 
the Cleveland Laurel School, and for the past two seasons has 
been conductor of orchestral concerts for young people in Green- 
wich, Connecticut. 

David Mannes and his wife separately received the rosette of 
an "Officer de l'Instruction Publique," conferred by the Ministère 
de l'Instruction Publique et des Beaux-Arts of France, in Septem- 
ber of 1926, for their work as artist-educators and directors of the 
David Mannes Music School. 

Few citizens of any city have so nobly and whole-heartedly 
served the cause of art in the city of their birth as has David 
Mannes. His special interest in the negro population of the vast 
metropolis stamps him as a man of wide sympathies, which alone 
should assure him of a place of great honor and esteem among 
his fellow-citizens, as well as of the larger fraternity of music 
lovers of all cities and lands. 


The evolution of Mischakoff's name is a rather complicated one. 
His father's original name was Beckerman, bùt for some reasons 
of his own he changed it to Fischberg. His son, Mischa, ,has made 

_=_=_, a derivation of his own fìrst name, adopt- 

ing the surname of MischakofT, under 
which name he is now known. 

Mischa Mischakoff was born on April 
3, 1895, in ProskourofT, Russia. His 
parents were Isaac and Masia Fischberg. 
Little Mischa showed a liking for the 
violin at the age of five, and received his 
fìrst instruction from his father, a flutist. 
After two years under his parent's care, 
he continued with his brother for three 
years. At the age of nine, he went to 
study in the Imperial Conservatory in 
St. Petersburg (Leningrad), with Kor- 
gueff, one of Leopold Auer's pupils. He 
was graduated in 1914, at the age of sixteen, with the highest 
honors offered by the institution, the gold medal, and the Anton 



Rubinstein prize of 1,200 gold roubles. When Korgueff fìrst heard 
the talented boy (Mischa's brother told the writer), he not only 
immediately accepted him, but offered him a stipend for life. 

He came to America in October of 1922. On his arrival, Mis- 
chakoff gave a series of successful concerts, but his fìrst real suc- 
cess was at the auditions for the Stadium Concerts in 1923. Out 
of 500 applicants he was the only soloist selected. He made his 
American dèbut as soloist at a Stadium concert in New York on 
July 27, 1923, playing on his famous Stradivarius. The seasons 
following he gave recitals in Carnegie Hall and Town Hall, in New 
York, and also appeared as soloist at a Sunday evening Metro- 
politan Opera House concert. Then followed his appointment as 
concert master of the New York Symphony Orchestra on October 
31, 1924, in which capacity he was employed for two seasons. 

In April of 1927, Mischakoff resigned from the New York 
Symphony Orchestra, and accepted the position of fìrst concert 
master in the Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowsky. 


Nicolas Moldavan was born in the town of Kremenetz, Province 
of Volhyn, Russia, on January 23, 1891. When two years old, 
his parents moved to Odessa, where he began his musical educa- 
tion under Professor Perman at the age 
of seven. Later he studied with Pro- 
fessor Alexander Fidelman. In 1906 he 
received a scholarship at the conserva- 
tory of Music at St. Petersburg (Lenin- 
grad), where he remained until 1912, 
graduating with highest honors from 
the classes of Korguyeff. When the 
World War broke out, Grand Duke Boris 
took a keen interest in the young musi- 
cian and made him organize a trio, 
when he soon became a favorite of that 
royal family. The Grand Duke pre- 
sented him with a diamond pin and gold 
cigarette case at the termination of the 
war in Russia. 

During the revolution of 1917, Moldavan joined the ensemble 
"Zimro" as a violin player and in 1918 left Russia with that 
organization. Since that time he specialized exclusively as a 
viola player. After an extensive tour with the "Zimro" in Siberia, 

224 Famous Musìcìans of a Wanderìng Race 

China, Japan, Java, and British Columbia, he finally arrived in the 
United States, where he soon became one of the leading and most 
popular viola player in New York City. After three successful 
years with the Lenox Quartet, Mischa Elman chose him as a mem- 
ìber of his own quartet, with which organization he played many 
successful public recitals and also made phonographic records. 

In various concerts he appeared with some of the greatest 
artists, including Harold Bauer, and Jascha Heifetz. He also took 
part in the Berkshire Music Festivals. In 1924 he was chosen 
member of the Beethoven Association. 

Moldavan's fame as a brilliant viola player spread rapidly 
throughout the United States. When in 1925 the famous viola 
player of the Flonzaley Quartet, Louis Bailly, resigned, Moldavan 
was immediately chosen in his place. The Flonzaley Quartet is 
the foremost music organization of its kind in the United States, 
and the appointment of Moldavan to the place of violist was the 
first instance since its existence that this body admitted a non- 
Latin in its membership, and a Jew at that. 


Erika Moiìini, is one of the few fortunate talents who have not 
been hampered in their study of art. She was born in Vienna in 
the year 1906. Her family (especially on the paternal side), has 
been musical for as far back as anyone 

can remember. At the age of four, she 
began to display a marked aptitude for 
the violin. Her father, Oskar Morini, 
head of a music conservatory, gave her 
her first instruction, but the child's swift 
and startling development into an expert 
persuaded him, after only two years, to 
take her to Professor Sevcik. 

Erika Morini was never a "child 
prodigy," for she was always a perfectly 
normal child, studying and playing as 
other children do and living the ordinary 
life of a child. She was educated at 
home, so that she might have more time 

to play her violin, but she took the regular examinations and was 
given * satisf actorily high marks in every subject except mathe- 
matics, for which she has the average girl's distaste. Although 
she was establishing a reputation as an unusual violinist, Erika 
was, until the age of eleven, only an outstanding artist in a city 
which has always been a sort of paradise for musicians. 



The custom of having a secondary artist fìll in the time be- 
tween a famous artist's numbers gave Erika her chance. She 
was chosen to play at a concert given by one of Vienna's favorite 
singers, so that a great crowd of critical music lovers was present, 
perfectly willing to be bored for a few minutes while their fav- 
orite rested. Instead of being bored they were treatecl to a new 
sensation — a sensation so great that after she had played her fìrst 
number, the concert was hers, and after the concert Vienna was 

This concert, and her playing with some of the best local or- 
chestras in Europe, led to her engagement, during the war, to play 
with Arthur Nikisch, who had long been considered the leading 
orchestral conductor of Europe. The disruption of travel causecl 
by the war compelled the soloist and orchestra to play the Mozart 
"Concerto" without a rehearsal. So little was known of Erika 
Morini in Leipzig that not even all the members of the orchestra 
knew that she was only eleven years old. Yet it"was after this 
concert that Nikisch gave his opinion of Morini in these words: 
"Erika Morini is not a wonder child, she is a toonder!" 

So successful was this concert that Nikisch at once engaged the 
young violinist to play with him in Berlin, and until her departure 
for America she played with him at least twice each year. En- 
gagements with other notable concluctors followed at once upon 
the critical approval of Nikisch's audiences. Felix Weingartner 
often chose her to be his soloist, and in the Music Festival Week 
in Vienna in 1920 she was the only artist distinguished by being 
asked to play with his orchestra. 

The war naturally limited the scope of Morini's activities, but 
as soon as actual hostilities ended, while the Peace Conference was 
officially making peace, she was invited abroad, and made a tour 
in Roumania and Poland. The profundity and understanding she 
displayed amazed her auditors who heard for the first time an ex- 
pression in music of the terrible emotions of years of war. In the 
midst of poverty and desolation, the tributes paid to Erika Morini 
could not be the extravagant jewels and gifts of former times. 
Even flowers were prohibitive. But baskets of food, cherished 
loaves of white bread, and other simple necessities, were sent to 
her as tributes to her playing. 

On her return to Vienna, she was about to start a tour of 
Switzerland when Otto Weil of the Metropolitan Opera House in 
New York brought word of her genius to Mr. F. C. Coppicus, 
proprietor of the Metropolitan Bureau, who engaged her for Am- 
erica. Her fìrst American appearance given in Carnegie Hall, 
New York City, as soloist with the New York Philharmonic Or- 
chestra under Bodanzky, on January 26, 1921, was made without 
any previous publicity. The result was electric, for the cities, 

226 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

swamped by violinists of high talents, were quite prepared f or an- 
other one, but totally unprepared f or the unheralded appearance of 
a genius. The notices she received the morning after her fìrst 
playing betray the excitement and wonder of those who heard her. 
Within four weeks she was compelled to play four New York re- 
citals and only after could she start on her fìrst American tour. 

Since then Erika Morini has been soloist with the New York 
Philharmonic Orchestra, the Metropolitan Opera House in New 
York, the symphonic societies of Chicago, Cincinnati, Minneapolis 
and other cities, and has given recitals in Chicago, Boston, Pitts- 
burg, Detroit, Cleveland, Kansas City, Milwaukee, New Orleans, 
Buffalo, Rochester, Washington, and many other points en route, 
making seventy-one appearances in fourteen months, and being 
immediately re-engaged in more than half of those cities. 

Morini has at the time of this writing completed her fourth 
American tour, and during her travels she has appeared with 
nearly every symphony orchestra in America and given recitals 
in every important city. In these four seasons Morini's fame and 
art have grown so that she is everywhere acknowledged the peer 
of all violinists of her sex, being compared with the greatest living 
masters, Kreisler, Heifetz, and Elman. 

A complete mistress of technique, Morini is able to address her 
entire attention to the music itself, the interpretation of its glories. 

"Her tone is a heartbreaker," wrote one critic, "but it is not 
her tone alone, it is her ability to extract, as it were, the very 
essence of music and convey it across the footlights to the audi- 
ence. She is able by her genius to reduce to a common denomina- 
tion her own soul, the soul of music and the soul of her listeners." 

As an artist Morini was perhaps more sensitive than the aver- 
age girl to the extremes of joy and fear, of love and hate, of pride 
and humiliation, which were the portion of everyone living through 
the war in Central Europe. 

Although protected by their parents and sheltered somewhat by 
their youth, all the children of Europe absorbed tragedy from the 
air they breathed and saw and felt things unknown to the Ameri- 
can boy or girl whom the war hardly touched. Erika Morini, 
according to those who know the present condition, is the fore- 
runner of a race of geniuses given to Europe by the war. 

Following the express wish of the late Maud Powell that her 
violin "must be used by a great artist," H. Godfrey Turner, her 
husband, has loaned the American artist's Guadagnini to Erika 
Morini for her American tours. Mr. Turner's decision was made 
immediately after hearing Morini at her dèbut. The violin was 
taken from the vault where it had been stored since Miss Powell's 
successor. The day after it was sent to Morini, Mr. Turner re- 
ceived the following letter: "Very dear Mr. Turner: When my 



heart is very full I cannot talk at all. The inner being has no 
tongue. So it is now. I can only tell you that I thank you from 
my heart. I have heard so much of your wife that I am proud 
above everything else to play on her violin. This is such a happy 
day for me and please do not be angry if I do not write any more 
but go to my violin. Gratefuliy yours, Erika Morini." 

The author has had the opportunity to hear this young artist 
on numerous occasions and has ever found her playing of a great 
and noble quality, her tone possessing true masculine breadth and 


Nachez, the celebrated violinist, who achieved world fame, was 
a pupil of Joachim. He was born on May 1, 1859 in Budapest. 
Robert Volkmann and Franz Liszt took a lively interest in him, 
and a government stipend enabled him 
to continue his education in Brussels, 
under Leonard. His technique was 
highly developed. 

Although Nachez made London his 
residence, he undertook concert tours in 
Germany, Switzerland, Russia, France, 
Holland, and the Scandinavian countries. 
This famous Hungarian violinist often 
played before Queen Victoria, Wilhelm I 
and II, the Russian Emperor and Em- 
press, the Danish Royal family, and 
other crowned heads. 

He also won laurels in Leipzig, Dres- 
den, Breslau and all the large German 
cities. He was many times likened to the greatest violinist of all 
times — Paganini. Here is what a Dttsseldorff critic once said 
of him : "Tivador Nachez recalls the times of the great Paganini. 
It is true that our knowledge of the latter emanates mostly from 
written sources and portraits, with which Heinrich Heine sur- 
rounded him in his Thoughts during Paganini's Playìng. Nachez' 
pale inspired face, his black hair, the calm which he preserves 
during demoniacally strong playing, resurrected before us the 
image of Paganini." 

Nachez enriched the literature of his instrument by his fam- 
ous "Danses Tzigaens," which are genuinely musical and effective. 
However, their composer regards them with mixed feelings. 

William Martin, in his book Violin Mastery, relates what 
Nachez once said to him: "I have done other work that seems 
to me relatively much more important, but when my name 

228 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

happens to be mentioned, echo always answers, 'Gypsy Dances, 
my little Gypsy Dances!' It is not quite fair. I have published 
thirty-fìve works; among them a Requiem Mass, two overtures, 
two violin concertos, three rhapsodies for violin and orchestra, 
variation on a Swiss theme, romances, a polonnaise, three Hun- 
garian poems, Evening Song, three classical master works of the 
seventh century, to say nothing of songs, and the two concertos 
of Vivaldi and Martini, which I have edited, are practically new 
creations. I wrote the "Gypsy Dances" as a mere boy, when I 
was studying with Leonard in Paris, and really at his suggestion. 
Leonard was not my fìrst teacher. I took up the violin when a 
boy fìve years of age, and for seven years practicecl from eight to 
ten hours a day, studying with Sabartheil in Buclapest, where I 
was born. But England, the Iand of my adoption, in which I have 
lived these last twenty-six years, is the land where I have found 
all my happiness, and much gratifying honor, and of which I have 
been a devotecl, ardent, loyal, and naturalized citizen for more 
than a quarter of a century. Playing with Liszt is my most 
precious musical recollection of Budapest. 

"What happiness there was in playing with such a genius! 
I was still a boy when I played the Grieg 'F Major Sonata/ which 
had just come fresh from the press with him. There was not a 
trace of condescension in Liszt's attitude towarcl me, but always 
encouragement, a tender, affectionate and paternal interest in a 
young boy, who at that moment was a brother artist. Through 

Liszt, I came to know tlie great men of Hungarian music of that 

time; Erkel, Hans Richter, Robert Volkmann and Count Gezer 
Zichi, and eventually I secured a scholarship which the King had 
founded for music, to study with Joachim in Berlin. Hahag was 
my companion there, but afterwards we separatecl, he going to 
Vieuxtemps, while I went to Leonard in Paris. Liszt had given 
me letters of introduction to various French artists, among them 
Saint-Saens. When I left Paris I went to London, and then began 
my public life as a violinist. I played no less than three times 
as a soloist with the Royal Philharmonic Society of London; once 
under Sir Arthur Sullivan, once under Sir A. C. MacKenzie, and 
once with Sir F. Cowen. On the last occasion, I was asked to 
introduce my new second "Concerto in B Minor." I appeared also 
under Liszt, Rubinstein, Brahms, Pasdeloup, Sir August Manns, 
Sir Charles Halle, Weingartner, Hans Richter, ancl others. 

"I also remember with pleasure an episode at the famous 
Pasdeloup concerts at the Cirque d'Hiver in Paris, on an occasion 
when I performed the 'F Sharp Minor Concerto' of Ernst. After 
I had fìnished, two ladies came to the Green Room; they were in 
deep mourning, and one of them, greatly moved, asked me to 



'allow her to thank me' for the manner in which I had played this 
concerto. She said : 'I am the widow of Ernst.' She also told me 
that since his death she had never heard the concerto played as I 
had played it. The other lady was the Marquise de Gallifet. 
Mme Ernst later presented me with her deceased husband's bow, 
and an autographic copy of the fìrst edition of Ernst's transcrip- 
tion for solo violin of Schubert's 'Erl Koenig.' " 


Alexander Petschnikoff, eminent Russian violinist, was born 
in Yeletz, Government of Orel, Russia, on February 8, 1873. At 
an early age he was taken by his parents to Moscow. One day 
a musician of the Royal Opera House 
chanced to hear the boy play the violin 
and managed to secure his entry in the 
Conservatory. Ple became a pupil of 
Hrimaly, and to earn his livelihood 
began to teach at the age of ten. He 
was graduated with the fìrst prize and 
gold medal. An opportunity was offered 
him of going for further study to Paris, 
but he declined. 

In Princess Ourusoff, Alexander 
0 found a patroness. She presented the 
boy with a violin which formerly be- 

longed to Ferdinand Laub, and is said 
to be the costliest instrument in exist- 
ence. In 1895 he made his bow before Berlin audiences and 
created a sensation. Since then his successes in Europe have 
been innumerable. He is said to have received the highest honor- 
arium ever paid to any violinist in Europe. 

Petschnikoff's technique is.not astonishing, but he possesses a 
full, penetrating, sympathetic tone. There is no charlatanism nor 
trickery in his playing. The charm of it rests in his glowing 
temperament, ideal conception and wonderful power of expression. 
He can move the hearts of his hearers as few violinists can. 

In 1910 Petschnikoff was appointed violin professor at the 
Berlin Royal Hochschule, and from 1913 to 1921 he was teacher 
at the Royal Academy in Munich. He married Mme Lili Petsch- 
nikoff, a distinguished violinist and jointly gave many concerts. 
They are now divorced. Petschnikoff's first visit to America was 
undertaken on Leschetizki's recommendation, who saw in this 
musician "an artist of the very fìrst rank and of inconceivable 

230 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


In tiiese days the violinist is almost, if not altogether, lord of the 
earth musically, for his tribe has increased to such a degree that 
singers and other instrumental artists find it hard to seeure 

opportunities for playing in pubìic. 

Genius, it is claimed, is either in- 
herited or acquired — both in the case of 
Piastro, the brilliant Russian violinist, 
whose born love for the violin dates 
back to early childhood and whose envi- 
able attainments have been acquired 
only by dint of hard work. Piastro has 
been conceded a place of high standing 
throughout the musical centers of the 
world. Critics speak of the beautiful 
sonority of his big tones, his impeccable 
technique and his profound and poetic 

Mishel Piastro was born in Kerth, 

Russia, on June 19, 1891, and is two years younger than his equally 
famous brother, Josef Piastro-Borisoff. His father, a very able 
musician (who was a pupil of Auer), gave the young Piastro his 
first lesson on the violin when the boy was six years old. "The 
Crimean town in which I passed my boyhood and part of my youth," 
Piastro says, "was not far from some of the lovely villas near the 
Black Sea which were the Summer homes of many of the Petro- 
grad aristocracy. Some of the Grand Dukes had places there, not- 
ably the Grand-Duke Nicolas, the father of the Grand Duke who 
was the Russian commander-in-chief during the World War. He 
was a very musical old gentleman and could draw a good, round 
tone from the violin and the viola. My father often playecl 
quartets with him in his beautiful villa near Yalta. 

"I studied with my father and then with Professor Auer. My 
father was himself an Auer pupil, but studied at a time when the 
idea of teaching at the Petrograd Conservatory was a good gen- 
eral musical education rather than the development of virtuosity 
of the highest type. In fact, there are hardly any cele- 
brated Auer pupils dating from the Professor's earlier teach- 
ing days, simply because at that time he did not trouble to 
develop the virtuoso aspect. I cannot say that I regret belonging 
to the later period because, though virtuoso is a word which once 
had evil associations, standing for technical skill and ability, but 
not necessarily for musical good taste or feeling, it has been 



rehabilitated by the playing of the great artists of the past 
twenty years. And imder Professor Auer's training no violin 
student ever could imagine that technique was all-important, or 
anything more than a means to the end of interpretation. Auer 
made short work of those pupils who came to him technically un- 
prepared. They were at once turned over to an assistant teacher 
and did not come to the professor himself until they were in a 
position to benefìt by his instruction. 

"One reason why his classes were so valuable to his students 
was that we had a chance to watch each other play every Satur- 
day and Wednesday, and had an audience of private pupils to put 
us on our mettle. You know an audience is the most valuable 
stimulant an ambitious young violinist can have to make him do 
his best. I am saying nothing new when I mention that the 
professor's great gift in teaching was interpretation, making the 
very soul of the great numbers of the violin repertory clear to 
those whom he taught. I have heard people accuse him of 
suppressing individuality, but I cannot agree with them. He never 
opposed individuality, unless it was taking the wrong course. The 
idea that all Auer pupils play in the same way is ridiculous. All 
you need to do is to go to concerts given by any two of his 
pupils to realize that each plays in a manner distinct from every 
other one. 

"My father often told me that when he studied with Auer, 
the Professor was not as patient and long-suffering as he after- 
ward became. I have seen him angry, though, and I think his 
anger on the occasion was natural. His reverence for the master 
composers of the violin was very great, and he could not put up 
with anything that seemed to belittle their merit. I know that 
once a pupil brought him the Beethoven Concerto and played it 
for him. Before he came to the cadenza, Auer asked him 'What 
cadenzà do you play?' 'Well, was the answer, 'people are tired of 
the same old cadenzas by Joachim and Ries and the rest. So, I 
have written my own.' He played it, and it turned out to be a 
very modern affair, entirely out of keeping with Beethoven's style. 
Then the storm broke. Auer raged, gave him a lecture which 
came from the heart, and told him in plain words that he ought 
to be ashamed of himself for his conceit and lack of reverence 
with regard to such a composer as Beethoven. 

"There were often distinguished visitors present at the Satur- 
day classes of Professor Auer's pupils. Many a famous fìgure in 
the world of music came in while I was studying with the 
Professor. There was Ysaye, that lion of the violin, and among 
others, Zimbalist, back from his first American tour of concerts." 

In 1910 Mishel Piastro graduated from the Conservatory with 
highest honors, and the following year he won the annual 1,000 

232 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ruble prize, which was contested for by many well-known 

Piastro spent the years of 1914-1919 in a concert tour of 
the Orient and the Antipodes. From press reports, this visit was 
the most sensational event in the musical history of that distant 
portion of the globe. The King of Siam was so impressed with 
his playing that he presented him with a gold medal. Mishel 
Piastro, by the way, was one of the three violinists whom Czar 
Nicholas exempted from military service, the other two being 
Mischa Elman and Efrem Zimbalist. 

It was not until 1920 that Piastro made his first American 
appearance, as soloist for the National Symphony Orchestra, in 
New York. He created a genuine stir in musical circles. Since 
then Piastro has been heard with great success in every part of 
the United States. Of special interest are the appearances he 
made with Richard Strauss, on the occasion of this famous 
composer-conductor's recent tour of the United States when 
Piastro played the "Sonata for Violin and Piano" by Strauss, with 
the composer at the piano. The various eulogistic reviews 
accorded the violinist in America, not only equalled but surpassed 
his splendid reception in Europe and elsewhere. 

Mishel Piastro was appointed concert master to the San 
Francisco Symphony Orchestra in 1926. 


A great loss to the musical world of Europe was the death of the 
sixteen-year-old Hungarian violinist, Stephan Partos, which 
occurred in Holland in 1919. 

Partos was born in Budapest on March 1, 1903, and at a very 
early age studied with J. Hubay, who took great interest in the 
boy genius. The author of this volume heard Stephan Partos play 
in the Scandinavian countries during the season of 1918. He was 
an extraordinarily beautiful boy and left an indelible impression 
by his truly marvelous playing. Having arrived in Amsterdam 
for a concert during the Spanish influenza epidemic, he succumbed 
to this disease in a few days. 

He gave promise of greatness equal to that of Jascha Heifetz, 
his successes in the Scandinavian countries, in particular, having 
always been greater than his rivals. 

Violinists 233 


Josep Piastro-Borissoff is the okler brother of Mishel Piastro, 
the renownecl violinist. He aclopted the surname of Borissoff to 
distinguish him from his brother. Both were born in the Russian 
Crimea — Josef on February 17, 1889. 

His first teacher on the violin was 
his father, a former pupil of Auer. In 
the year of 1900, while the great violin- 
ist Pablo Sarasate was concertizing in 
Russia, Piastro-Borissoff played before 
him in Odessa several times, receiving 
most valuable instruction from the cele- 
brated virtuoso, who wrote a personal 
letter to Leopold Auer, ancl in 1902 he 
went to the Conservatory of St. Peters- 
burg (now Leningrad), where he became 
a pupil of Leopolcl Auer, and in his 
classes was associated with Mischa El- 
man, Efrem Zimbalist, and Kathleen 
Parlow. Upon his graduation he was awarded a gold medal as 
the honor pupil of the Auer class, and as a special distinction 
was given a famous olcl Italian violin called "Gobetta," the gift 
of Princess Alternburg, president of the Russian Musical Society. 

For four years afterward he toured the various Russian cities 
in recital, as soloist with the principal orchestras, and as director 
and fìrst violin of the Leopold Auer Quartet, which he organized in 
honor of his maestro. They achieved a very great success in the 
foremost circles of St. Petersburg, Odessa, Warsaw, and other 
musical centers of his native lancl. During this time he was 
frequently "commanded" to give. recitals before the Court, the 
Czar and the Imperial family, being rewarded with many hand- 
some gifts and other honors while fulfìlling his military service. 
As a special privilege the Czar permitted him to appear in con- 
certs outside of military and governmental circles in civilian 

Released from the army, Joseph re-entered the Conservatory 
for post-graduate studies in composition and orchestration. While 
there he composed the score of an opera "Lolita," which was 
procluced with success at the Palace Theatre in St. Petersburg. 

In 1918 began a tour to remote parts of the world seldom visited 
by concert artists. In Constantinople he gave ten concorts, 
playing before the sultan. Before the Sultan of Arabia he was 
equally well received and was offered an apartment in the palace 

234 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

of Beirut, with a pension for life, which would have enabled him 
to devote all his time to study and composion. However, a tempt- 
ing offer took him to Athens instead, and there he gave recitals 
and played four times as soloist with the Symphony Orchestra 
under the direction of Armand Marsick. 

The late King Alexander of Greece decorated the artist with 
the title of "Chevalier de l'Ordre de Sauveur." Josef was the first 
foreigner to receive this honor. It has since been granted to 
Saint-Saens, but to no other foreigner. 

Borissoff is a man of twin talents, for he is also an excellent 
landscape painter. So great is his gift in this form of artistic 
expression that the American National Academy of Design made 
him, in Autumn of 1924, a member of that venerable body, a 
distinction rarely bestowed on a man so young, especially when 
a foreigner. 

He came to America on March 20, 1920, became a citizen in 
1926, and on November 24 of that year, left for a world concert 
tour through Europe, India, Java, and Australia, together with 
Alfred Mirovitsch, the renowned pianist. • 


Maximilian Pilzer, American violinist and composer, was born 
in New York City, on February 26, 1890, being the son of Jacob 
and Hulda (nee Cohn) Pilzer. At the age of six he gave his fìrst 
public recital, having been prepared for 
this appearance by local teachers. 

Later, in the course of his studies, he 
has been with Joachim, and Gustave 
Hollaender at the Stern Conservatory in 
Berlin. In that city he made his dèbut 
at the age of twelve, then returned to 
the United States, where he toured as 
soloist. In 1908 he was concert master 
of the Russian Symphony and the Peo- 
ple's Orchestra in New York, and from 
1914 to 1917 occupied the same position 
with the New York Philharmonic Or- 
chestra. He then resigned to give a 
concert tour of his own throughout the 
United States. 

Among Pilzer's compositions are: "Love Song," "Valse Cap- 
rice," "Berceuse," "Orientale," "Meditation," and several other 
pieces for violin. 



Pilzer is a member of the Bohemian Tonkiinstler Society. 

Pilzer holds the unique record of having appeared with the 
New York Philharmonic Symphony as soloist over twenty-five 
times. His tone is warm and sympathetic, with rich quality and 
ample volume. He displays serious musicianship and variety 

Early in 1926, Pilzer was engaged as conductor at the Rialto 
Theatre, of New York City, from which he resigned in April of 
1927, to accept a similar position at the Roxy Theatre in the same 

Besides his activities as conductor, Pilzer is very busy teaching 
and has a large class of students who come from all parts of the 
country to study under him. 

Pilzer is a member of the Bohemian Society. 


Myron Poliakin is one of the most gifted virtuoso violinists of 
the Auer school, whose traditions he represents in their present 
form. A fellow-pupil of Heifetz and Toscha Seidel, he entered 
Auer's classes at the age of twelve, and 
remained with him for six years. 

Myron Poliakin was born in Tscher- 
kassy, near Kieff, Russia, on January 
31, 1895. His father was a violinist 
and conductor, and he it was who gave 
the boy his fìrst instruction. At the age 
of ten, Myron went to Kieff, where he 
studied with Vousovskaya, a pupil of 
Laub, in the Lyssenko School. Two 
years later he entered Auer's classes in 
Petrograd, and at the age of thirteen 
began concertizing in Russia, Poland, 
Germany, Scandinavia and America. 
Poliakin was a particular favorite of 
Auer and Glazounoff, the director of the Petrograd Conservatory. 
In the course of his artistic career, he has played under such 
conductors as Safanoff, Koussevitzky, Feitelberg, Glazounoff, and 
others. He is now living in New York, where he is active both 
as concert artist and teacher. 

236 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Racis 


Miciiael Press, eminent violinist, conductor and one of the most 
inspired musicians of our day, was born in Vilna, Russia on 
September 8, 1872. His father, Isaac, was cornetist in the City 
Theatre of Vilna, and his mother (nèe 
Stupel) came of a musical family. 

At the age of eight, Press began 
studying with Tissen, in his native town, 
and when ten years old made his fìrst 
public appearance. At the age of thir- 
teen he was concert master in the Vilna 
Opera House, and at seventeen was 
assistant conductor to the famous Suk. 

For some years he was conductor of 
the Kartayev Opera Company, travelling 
all over Russia. In 1897 he entered the 
Moscow Conservatory, where he studied 
with Hrimaly, and two years later 
graduated, winning the gold medal. At 
his graduation, he was offered the post of professor at the Con- 
servatory, but refused the honor, as it necessitated his accepting 

Press was also a member of the quartet with Sokolsky and 
von Glen, in which organizations he played the second violin, and 
later organized his own quartet. From 1901 to 1904 he was 
professor at the Philharmony Conservatory in Moscow, and from 
1905 was at the head of the Russian Trio organized by himself 
(the other two were his brother Joseph Press, 'cello, and his 
wife Maurina, piano). From 1915 to 1918 he taught at the Im- 
perial Conservatory in Moscow. 

In 1910 Press won first prize in a competition where twenty 
violinists competed; and for two years conducted the orchestra 
in Gòteborg, Sweden. He also received many honors from crowned 
persons in Europe, among whom were Emperor Wilhelm II, the 
King of Roumania, the Dukes of Duxemburg, Gerra, Anhalt, 
Coburgatha, and others. 

Press came to America in 1923. During 1923 he taught violin 
at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia, and also conducted the 
Philadelphia Philharmonic and Boston Orchestras. 

Press possesses an extraordinary musical memory, which 
enables him to be completely independent of the score. The 
Gòteborg press was very enthusiastic over his work with their 
orchestra. "All criticism must be silent in face of the deeply 



inspired performance of Professor Press. He is a true Beethoven 
interpreter, but also conducted Tschaikowsky's Symphonie Pathe- 
tique with rare intensity and grandeur." The Boston public and 
press were equally impressed by his conducting of the orchestra 

The reviewer of the Boston Traveler wrote : 

"He has a genial, pleasing personality and a quiet, dignified 
manner. He manipulates his baton without 'prima cionna' manner- 
isms. Yesterclay he gave forceful, artistic interpretations of the 
pieces of the program, with a beautiful sense of shading. He 
indulged in brilliant phrasing; in fact, he minimized his own 
presence to a rare degree, rather letting the personality of each 
composer dominate the music. Thus there was the fiery, impas- 
sioned Wagner of the Flying Dutchman, given with a dramatic 
flavor that quite changed Symphony Hall atmosphere to one of 
scenery, costumes and shifting lights. There was the serious, 
masterful Brahms, demanding every last accomplishment on the 
violin — and getting it. And the vibrant scintillating Sibelius, 
transporting the hearer to the far north where lights are opales- 
cent and spaces limitless." 

Press is a noble and serious musician. The writer remembers 
a concert by Michael Press in Bergen, Norway, in 1916, given at 
the Cathedral. Press's popularity among music lovers in that 
picturesque country was great, and there were not enough seats 
in the temple to go around; many had to sit on the floor. Press 
played, among other things, Bach's "E major Concerto" to the 
accompaniment of the organ. The effect of his masterly and 
heart-felt playing was such that the people remained silent long 
after the last echoes died in the vaulted expanses of the old church. 


Rudolph Polk, promising young violinist, was born in New 
York City in 1893 and is the son of D. M. J. Polk. Rudolph Polk 
studied with David Pasternack, Max Bendix, and Lichtenberg. He 
played in Europe until 1916, and then enlisted with the American 
armies cluring the war. In 1919, he made his New York dèbut in 
Carnegie Hall, and then went to Europe for further study, later 
to appear in concerts there. During the season of 1924-25 he 
was assistant artist to Chaliapine, famous Russian basso, on his 
tour through the American continent. 

238 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Tossy Spivakowski, who comes of a very musical f amily, was born 
in Odessa, and was a pupil of Fiedelman. In his playing he ex- 
presses the impetuous temperament of his birthplace, the south of 
Russia. The author of this work had opportunities to hear this 
slender, dark young man in Norway in 1919, where he concertized 
both in recital and as soloist with symphony orchestras, and was 
much impressed by his technique as well as by his passionate and 
impetuous tone. During the last few years he acted as concert 
master with the Berlin Philharmony. 

Aside f rom his father, a professional musician, two of Tossy's 
brothers are talented pianists. 


Tiiis extraordinary violinist, who was for a long time concert 
master of the Leipzig Court Band, was considered one of the 
greatest violinists of the latter half of the nineteenth century. 

Rappoldi was in no wise inferior to 
Joachim; his full, noble tone, grandeur 
of style, clearness of interpretation, 
purity and elegance of nuance — all re- 
minded one of the Berlin king of 
violinists, yet Rappoldi did not imitate 
Joachim but showed independence and 

Rappoldi was born on February 21, 
1831, in Vienna. At the age of seven he 
appeared as pianist and violinist, play- 
ing his own composition at a concert 
organized by his teacher, Doleschallein. 
Later his teachers were Hellmesberger, 
Bohm, Ernst, Janza. Rappoldi made a 
concert tour through the cities of Austria-Hungary, Germany, 
Scandinavia, Holland, and Belgium. At one time he was concert 
master in Rotterdam, and later was conductor in Luebeck, Stettin 
and Prague. In 1876 he received the title of Prussian Professor 
and Concert Master in Dresden. 

His concert tours, on which his wife, Laura Kahr, a famous 
pianist, accompanied him in the Scandinavian countries, Vienna, 
Warsaw, and other cities, could be likened to a triumphal march. 



Among his works, published and in manuscript, are two 
string quartets, two sonatas for violin and piano, two symphonies, 
overture and songs. 

He died on May 16, 1903 in Dresden. 


Max Rosen, eminent violinist, was born in Dorohoi, Roumania, 
on April 11, 1899. He is the son of Benjamin Rosen, a barber 
and amateur musician. The family came to America when Max 
was eight months old. He was educated 
in the New York Public Schools, ancl 
received his fìrst music lesson from his 
father at the age of five. Rachel Lubar- 
sky (now Garbat), who had collected 
funds to send Mischa Levitzki abroad, 
also undertook to collect funds for Max's 
education. Through the aid of Mr. and 
Mrs. James Goldmark, a MacDowell 
scholarship was secured for him but 
was refused, as it was too small to send 
him abroad. Edward J. de Cappet then 
heard Rosen and offered to supply 
money for his education. While in New 
York Max took lessons from Alois 
Truka, Bernard Sinsheimer and David Mannes (1908-11). 

In 1912 Rosen went to Dresden to study with Auer. When 
Auer returned to St. Petersburg (Leningrad), Rosen wished to 
accompany him, but because of his religion was refused entrance 
into Russia. He continued his studies with Willy Hess in Berlin. 
At the outbreak of the war, when Auer went to Christiania 
(1916), Rosen went there and continued his work with his former 
master. He made his dèbut in that city in the presence of the 
King and Queen, and members of the court. This initial appear- 
ance was followed by tours in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and 
Germany, where he made his Berlin dèbut in 1917. His New 
York dèbut was made on January 11, 1918, when he played the 
Goldmark Concerto with the Philharmonic Orchestra. Since then 
he has been heard in many of the large cities of the United States. 

Max Rosen possesses brilliant technical attainments. His 
tone, while not big, is nevertheless of a beautiful and penetrating 
quality. His playing of Mozart, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Bruch, 
and Saint-Saens are marked by a fine elegance and truly poetic 
fervor and grace. 

240 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 


Erna Rubinstein was born in Hermannstadt, Hungary, in 1903. 
At the age of seven, after only four weeks of lessons on the 
violin, she made her dèbut as soloist at one of the conservatory 
musicales. She displayed such extra- 
ordinary natural gifts that a year later 
she was placed at the Conservatory of 
Budapest and became a pupil of Hubay, 
the noted violinist and composer. Five 
years later, at the age of thirteen, after 
capturing the highest possible honors, 
she was brought out as soloist with 
the leading orchestras in Budapest and 
Vienna. From that time on her rise to 
European fame was rapid and aensa- 

She toured Germany, Czecho-Slo- 
vakia, and Scandinavia. Arthur Nikisch 
was so amazed with her talent that at 
her fìrst recital in Berlin he played her piano accompaniments. 
In Amsterdam she was introduced by Willem Mengelberg as 
soloist with the Concertgebouw orchestra. Again her success was 
extraordinary. She subsequently gave twenty-nine concerts in 
Holland within a short time, playing everywhere to capacity 

Her American dèbut was made in February, 1922 as soloist 
with the New York Philharmonic under Willem Mengelberg. 
There had been no preliminary trumpetings — it was only her 
amazing performance that in the words of one distinguished critic, 
"aroused a Friday afternoon audience to enthusiasm." 

In spite of the lateness of the season, Erna Rubinstein appeared 
six more times in New York, including three more appearances 
with the Philharmonic. In addition, she played in Minneapolis, 
Nashville, Lindsborg and other cities. Since then she made two 
tours in America, dividing her time between European appear- 
ances in the autumn, and American engagements in the winter. 

Erna Rubinstein became a violinist by mere chance. Her 
father had played the fìddle indifferently well, and her parents 
wished her to study the piano because it was considered necessary 
that the little giii play some instrument for her own as well as 
her parents' pleasure. She was taken to a conservatory in Buda- 
pest, where the Rubinstein family lived, but when the principal 
saw her he shook his head. He explained that she appeared too 



fragile for the harcl hours of practice, seated at the piano. But 
taking her long* white fìngers in his hand, and examining them 
closely, he said that the child could study the violin. The mother 
of little Erna was somewhat annoyed at this announcement. She 
had listened to her husband's poor fiddling for many years, and 
feared that the daughter would follow in his footsteps. 

But to the great surprise of parents and teacher, the child 
took to the violin like the proverbial duck to water. In a short 
time the little student was giving a recital in the conservatory and 
two years later gave a concert in another city where she was 
recognizecì as an artist. The great Jeno Hubay, whose name abroad 
is as well known as that of Leopold Auer, offered to teach her for 
the mere joy of having such a pupil. Her parents accepted this 
offer and for three years she remained in the studio, constantly 
refusing offers from managers who saw in this child's playing a 
potential fortune. When she emerged from Hubay's studio she 
continued her career, and the demands for her appearance all 
over Europe were innumerable. 

Erna has other talents also. The first thing she learned in 
school was to dance. In a very short time she was the show pupil, 
the première danseuse. As star dancer she used to appear in all 
the school exhibitions, and even went touring with a group of 
pupils to the towns in the immediate vicinity. But it was the 
marvelous sense of rhythm which she displayed with her little feet 
and body, that led her mother and father to believe that she should 
express herself with a musical instrument. Between the serious 
periods of her practicing Erna watched the people who came 
and went, and often convulsed her parents by imitating some of 
the great musicians who heard her play, both at the conservatory 
where she studied, and later when she was acknowledged to be one 
of the fìnest fiddlers of the generation. She has been known to 
dress up in men's evening clothes and with rumpled hair, slightly 
humped shoulders and serious frown, imitate to perfection the 
famous Jan Paderewski. Early in life this little artist also showed 
a decided taste for the use of color. She has done portraits for 
several friends that are excellent likenesses, in a manner quite 
reminiscent of Gauguin. A sketch of herself which she made at 
the age of fourteen has been reproduced and published. 

"As I grow older, and feel things differently — not more 
intensely than I did when a small child," she says, "I fìnd that I 
interpret the works of the masters with more insight and imagi- 
nation than when I was younger. Before, I seemed to play and 
interpret as though I were being guided by some unseen presence. 
This guidance is of course, unexplainable. As I grow older, I am 
more dependent upon my own self, upon my own brain. My one 

242 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

idea, now, is to play the works of a composer as nearly possible in 
the way that I believe and feel he meant it to be played. In fact, 
years have made me change. For I know I do not play composi- 
tions as I did last year or two or three years ago. I feel them 
diiferently, and I hope that my change is progress as well as 

Genius never seems to feel satisfìed. This realization comes 
as a consolation to less gifted mortals. One hears of a famous 
singer whose desire is to retire to the quiet of some far-off 
mountain top, while a noted baritone seriously considers giving up 
his operatic career in order to enter a monastery. Now Erna 
Rubinstein, having received every possible praise from the Eu- 
ropean and American press, wants to become an orchestral 
conductor. "It is tremenclously thrilling to play as. soloist with a 
great orchestra, and I have always longed to concluct a huge, well 
trained body of musicians. Unfortunately, the woman orchestral 
conductor is selclom considered seriously. However, it needs a 
little pioneering ancl I shouldn't be surprised if I started doing 
this in the near future." 


Few celebrated violinists have led more romantic and adventur- 
ous lives than Remenyi. Born at Hewes in Hungary, in 1830, 
he possessed the relentless spirit of his race. 

From his twelfth to his fifteenth 
year he studied the violin at the Vienna 
Conservatory under Bohm. In 1848 
he became adjutant to the clistinguished 
General Gorgez, and fought under Kos- 
suth and Klapka in the war with Aus- 
tria. When the insurrection failed he 
escaped to America, where he made a 
tour as virtuoso. In 1853 he visited 
Weimar and sought out Franz Liszt, 
who at once recognized his genius and 
became his friend and guide. 

In 1854 he went to London and was 
appointed solo violinist in the Queen's 
Band. Six years later he obtained an 
amnesty and returned to Hungary where he became solo violinist 
in the bancl of the Emperor of Austria. 



His restless disposition would not allow him to remain long in 
one place, and in 1865 he once more began to travel. He visited 
Paris, where he created a furore, and then contimied his trium- 
phant course through Germany, Holland, and Belgium. After 
settling in Paris for about two years, he returned in 1877 to 

He went to America and remained there for some years, then 
proceeded in 1887 to the Cape of Good Hope and Madagascar. 
In 1891 he once more visited London. A few years later he 
returned to the United States where he passed the remainder of 
his days. 

He was frequently compared to Wilhelmj, although he differed 
widely from him in temperament, ideas and musicianship. In his 
prime Remenyi was master of an enormous technique and the 
possessor of a strongly pronounced poetic individuality. He was 
most successful in playing Hungarian music, some of which he 
adapted to his instrument; but the stormier pieces of Chopin 
which he arranged for the violin were given by him with tremend- 
ous effect. 

During his long career, he toured Australia and almost all the 
islands of the Pacific, also Java, China, and Japan; in fact, he 
went where few if any violinists of his ability had been before. 
He discovered thirty out of his collection of forty-seven old and 
valuable violins in South Africa. Most of them had probably 
been the property of the Huguenots. 

It was related by Remenyi that when he was a young man in 
Hamburg in 1853, he was to appear at a fashionable soirèe one 
night, but at the last moment his accompanist was too ill to play. 
Remenyi went to a music store and asked for an accompanist. 
The proprietor sent J. Brahms, then a lad of sixteen, who was 
struggling for existence, and teaching for a very small sum. 
Remenyi and Brahms became so interested in one another that 
they forgot all about the soirèe, and sat up until the next morning 
playing and chatting together. Remenyi's negligience of his 
engagement resulted in the loss of any further business in Ham- 
burg. Together with Brahms, he set out for Hanover. They gave 
concerts as they went, thus earning sufficient funds to carry them 
on their way. 

At Hanover they called on Joachim, who arranged for them to 
play before the court. After this, they proceeded to Altenburg 
to see Liszt, who received them warmly and offered them a home. 
During all this time Brahms received Iittle or no recognition, in 
spite of Remenyi's enthusiasm in his cause, neither did he fìnd 
much favor with Liszt, although the Iatter recognized his talent. 
He therefore returned to Hanover, where Joachim gave him a 

244 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

letter to Schumann, and it was Schumann's enthusiastic welcome 
ancl declaration that a new genius had arisen that established 
Brahm's reputation in musical circles. 

Remenyi died of apoplexy while on the concert stage on May 
15, 1898, in San Francisco. 

It is said that Remenyi's real name was Hoffman. 


Arnold Rose, who made a great name for himself particularly 
because of his famous Rose Quartet, which is considered one of 
the finest musical organizations now in existence, was born on 
October 24, 1863, in Yassy, Roumania. 

At the age of seven he took up the 
study of the violin, and when ten years 
old was admitted to the Vienna Con- 
servatory, where he studied under Pro- 
fessor Karl Goèsler. During the three 
years in the Conservatory he received 
three . fìrst prizes and was graduated 
with the silver medal. 

In 1881 he accepted the post of fìrst 
soloist and concert master in the Vienna 
Imperial Opera, under Wilhelm Jahn; 
this was the more flattering to the 
violinist since he was then only eighteen 
years old. 

From 1888 to 1889, Rose undertook concert tours over Germany 
and Roumania, and also visited Paris. Later, from 1889 to 1896 
he was fìrst concert master at the famous Beyreuth Festivals. He 
organized regular chamber music evenings in Vienna, and his 
Quartet has since become universally famous by its tours through 
Austria-Hungary, Germany, Italy, etc. 

In 1894 he became violin professor at the Vienna Conservatory, 
where he is still teaching. 

His brother Edouard (born 1865 in Roumania) is a very 
gifted 'cellist. He has been soloist of the court orchestra in 
Weimar since 1890. 




Paul Stassevitch is one of those rare musicians who has achieved 
virtuosity in a dual role — that of pianist as well as violinist. This 
noted artist's dèbut in America in 1924 was as soloist with the State 
Symphony Orchestra under Josef Stran- 
sky, and the works he performed are 
among the most exacting in the reper- 
toire of violinists and pianists, Brahms' 
Concerto for Violin and Tschaikow- 
sky's for piano. 

Born in Simpheropol, Russia, on May 
5, 1894, Paul Stassevitch revealed, at an 
age where most precociously musical 
children attain skill as soloist on one in- 
strument, an equal talent and facility for 
the violin and the piano. His fìrst teach- 
ers were : Sokolowsky and A. Sapelnikoff 
(violin), and Mme Koboreva (piano). 
He was thirteen when he made his first 
appearance with symphony orchestra as soloist on both instru- 
ments, and the works he played were the Mendelssohn violin and 
the Grieg piano concertos. 

Like so many others of the brilliant Russian soloists of today, 
Paul Stassevitch studied with Professor Leopold Auer, from whose 
class at the Petrograd Conservatory he graduated in 1917. Al- 
though it was in 1911 that he began his studies with the famous 
master, he had played for Auer seven years earlier while the violin- 
ist was touring Southern Russia. Professor Auer had urged the 
boy's parents to permit Paul to return with him at once to St. 
Petersburg (Leningrad) , but this they had decided against in view 
of the fact that his school studies would be seriously interrupted. 
Upon entering the Conservatory, Paul, whose first piano teacher 
had been a pupil of Rimsky-Korsakoff, continued his studies on this 
instrument with Professor Nikolayeff. He was the favorite ac- 
companist for the violinists and cellists at the Conservatory, and 
acted as accompanist for Professor Auer's classes. 

Paul Stassevitch's dèbut in Moscow, made while he was yet a 
student at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, was with Koussevit- 
sky's orchestra, where he played Glazounoff's Violin Concerto, for 
which the young artist had the distinguished conductorship of the 
composer. Later, in 1914, he made his first appearance in Scandina- 
via where he became, during that season and in successive years, 
one of the most popular violin virtuosi, and was assured a per- 

246 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

manent place of esteem on the concert platforms of Norway, Den- 
mark, and Sweden. 

As England, France, Germany, and other European countries 
were closed to him as a Russian, Stassevitch arrived in the United 
States in 1919, invited by Professor Auer whose assistant he be- 
came. For a time he retired from the concert platform, during 
which period he studied, for a year, with Josef Lhevinne to perfect 
his piano technique. 

Paul Stassevitch married, in 1923, the celebratecl Norwegian 
pianist, J. Margarethe Sòmme. 


Ilya Schkolnik, present concert master of the Detroit Symphony 
Orchestra, under Gabrilowitch, and fìrst violinist of the Detroit 
Quartet, was born in Odessa, Russia on February 11, 1890. His 
father, Samuel, a clarinetist and violin- 
ist, began teaching Uya at the age of five. 
One year later the boy appeared in con- 
cert, and later toured with his brother, to 
raise funds to enable them to go abroad. 
In Berlin they met Joachim, who was in- 
terested in the boy's talent. He advised 
him to remain in Berlin. There Ilya won 
a scholarship, and studied with Gustav 
Hollaender, after which he was gradu- 
ated from Leipzig Royal Conservatory, 
under Hans Sitt in 1905. 

Later he toured the Scandinavian 
countries and Germany, and then went to 
Belgium to continue his studies under 
Cesar Thomson. At the Brussels Royal Conservatory, in 1918, he 
received the "Premier Prix avec la plus grande distinction." When 
the war broke out in 1914, he found himself in Dresden. Unable 
to fìll his engagements in France, Belgium, and other countries, he 
embarked for America. He became in the course of time concert 
master of the Russian Symphony, assistant concert master with 
the New York Symphony, concert master with the Stadium Sym- 
phony under Volpe, and since 1919, concert master with the Detroit 
Symphony, where he also founded the Detroit String Quartet. 




When Alexander Saslavsky diecl in 1924 in San Francisco, vio- 
linists and the musical world at large lost a staunch champion and 
supporter, as well as a fine musician. Saslavsky specialized as a 
concert master, just as others specialize 
in solo or chamber music work. His last 
position was as concert master with the 
San Francisco Orchestra, a post which 
was taken over at his death by Mishel 

Alexander Saslavsky was born on 
February 19, 1876 in Kharkoff, Russia. 
He began his musical studies under pri- 
vate teachers at the age of nine. Two 
years later he entered the Imperial Con- 
servatory in Petrograd, studying imder 
Pestel (a pupil of David), and later 
under Gorsky. He then went to the Vien- 
na Conservatory, where he studied under 
Jacob Griin until 1893. The same year he made a concert tour of 
Canada, and then joined the New York Symphony as one of the 
first violinists. He subsequently acted as concert master, and fre- 
quently appeared with it as soloist. He was also active in organ- 
izing the Russian Symphony in 1904, and was its concert master 
for four seasons. In 1900 he founded the Mendelssohn Tri Club.; 
in 1904 the New York Trio, with Paolo Gallico and Henry Bram- 
sen ; and in 1907 the Saslavsky Quartet. With the last-named or- 
ganization he gave concerts throughout the United States. 

His summer concerts with his quartet in Denver, Colorado, 
which began in 1915, were so well received that he subsequently 
repeated the series every year. Among many novelties he intro- 
duced Chausson's "Poème" for the fìrst time in the United States. 
For several years previous to his death his musical activities were 
confined to San Francisco and Los Angeles. 


Leon Sametini, Dutch violinist, and head of the violin department 
of the Chicago Music College since 1912, was born in Rotterdam, 
Holland, on March 16, 1886, He is the son of Samuel and Rose 

248 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Sametini. Leon began studying the violin 
with his uncle, Michel von Groot, and 
from 1892 to 1896 was under the tutelage 
of Felice Togni and Bram Eldering in 
Amsterdam. In 1902 he went to Prague, 
where he became a pupil of Sevcik for 
one year. 

Sametini made his dèbut in 1896 in 
Flushing, Holland, and achieved the dis- 
tinction of .a solo appearance with the 
Amsterdam Concertgebouw under Wil- 
lem Mengelberg in March of 1902. Since 
then he has appeared with practically 
every leading orchestra in America and 
Europe. His American dèbut took place 
in Orchestra Hall, Chicago, during Christmas of 1912. 

Leon Sametini plays with a fìne tone. He phrases with intelli- 
gence and indulges in no banal efTects for the sake of pleasing. 


This eminent Russian violin virtuoso and teacher was born on 
December 5, 1880 in Mazur, Russia. He studied the violin under 
Sevcik, Hrimaly, and Auer. In 1908 he went to Berlin, where he 
taught at the Stern Conservatory, and in 
1914 received an invitation from the 
Amsterdam Conservatory, which he ac- 
cepted. Schmuller concertized a great 
deal -with Max Reger and Leonid Kreut- 
zer, as well as alone, both in Europe and 
in America, introducing many new works 
on his programs. He was the fìrst to 
play Reger's "Violin Concerto" and car- 
ried on a lively propaganda for his 
favorite composer and friend. Schmul- 
ler's is a deep, expressive tone. He is an 
exceptional ensemble player. 

At present he is occupying an im- 
portant post at the Amsterdam Conserv- 
atory. During his American season of 1922-23 he appeared under 
the baton of his friend, Willem Mengelberg, as well as with Stokow- 
ski, Gabrilowitch, and others. 

Violinìsts 249 


Joseph Szigeti's chief musical characteristics are extreme ele- 
gance and dignity. His career has been a succession of successes. 
The long list of orchestral engagements which he has fìlled in the 
past several seasons is more eloquent 
than any clescription of his playing. 
Famous as a player of classics, Szigeti is 
also renowned as the violinist who has 
introduced many of the new works of the 
violin repertory. Hamilton Harty's Vio- 
lin Concerto dedicated to Szigeti; Bus- 
oni's Violin Concerto; Bloclfs Violin 
Sonata and Prokofieff's Violin Con- 
certo are a few of the modern composi- 
tions which he has played at the pre- 
mières. Eugene Ysaye's Sonata for Solo 
Violin, recently published, is another 
work dedicated to Szigeti. This sonata, 
introduced by him, made a great success ; 
the violinist received a letter of gratitude from the composer thank- 
ing him for his brilliant efforts in behalf of "an old minstrel." 

The American composer, Templeton Strong, now living in 
Geneva, has also composed a work for Szigeti — a poem for violin 
and orchestra, which Szigeti played in Europe, and also in New 
York under Mengelberg. 

Orchestral conductors are perhaps the severest judges of solo 
instrumentalists. The unanimous approval of an artist by cele- 
brated conductors is probably the highest possible endorsement. 
Joseph Szigeti has been selected by Leopold Stokowski, Wilhelm 
Furtwaengler, Walter Damrosch, Frederick Stock, Sergei Kousse- 
vitzky, and Fritz Reiner as soloist. 

During the past few years, Szigeti has appeared as soloist in 
Europe with Furtwaengler and Bruno Walter in Berlin, Pierne 
and Rene-Baton in Paris, Ysaye in Brussels, Richard Strauss in 
Salzburg, Mengelberg in Amsterdam, Reiner in Prague, Schnee- 
voigt in Stockholm, Ansermet in Geneva, and with many other im- 
portant conductors. 

London proclaimed him as "one of Nature's violinists." 
Christiania announced that his playing had the "sacred fìre." 
Amsterclam described him as "grand, noble." Bologna declared 
that such playing has been "imknown to us since the interpreta- 
tions of Kreisler." Madrid hailed him "a magician." Paris con- 
siders him "among the most remarkable," while Brussels holcls him 

250 Famous Musician s of a Wandering Race 

to be in the same category. Bucharest says that he "combines all 
the quahties of the great artists," and Rome summarizes him as 
master of the violin." 

Joseph Szigeti was born in Budapest on September 5, 1892 and 
studied with Hubay, making his dèbut at the age of thirteen in 
Budapest, Dresden, and London. He was the last of the great con- 
temporary violinists to come to America. Brought over by the 
Ihiladelphia Philharmonic Orchestra, under Stokowski, he ap- 
peared as soloist in the autumn of 1925, fìrst in Philadelphia, and a 
tew days later in New York City. His success was great and imme- 
diate. Engagements followed with all the leading orchestras He 
has since played with the Chicago, Boston, and many other leading 
symphomc organizations in United States. 

Olin Downes, music reviewer of the New York Tìmes, wrote 
De Musset remarked that while his glass was small it was his own 
An artist's style may be intimate or commanding, he may deal in 
broad brush strokes or effects of miniature; the fìrst and last requi- 
site is that he do a beautif ul thing and reveal himself in doing it. 

"These cogitations are induced by the violin recital of Joseph 
Szigeti last night in Aeolian Hall. This was Mr. Szigeti's first ap- 
pearance in recital in New York. He had performed several days 
previously in Carnegie Hall with the Philadelphia Orchestra, and 
his performance on that occasion had bred curiosity to hear him 
under more intimate circumstances. The result justifìed expecta- 
tions. Mr. Szigeti appears to be most himself, and to show most 
effectively the different phases of his artistic personality when he 
can get close to his audience and discourse the music of different 
composers. He played last night Tartini, Bach, Mozart, Bloch, 
Prokofieff, Veracini, Dvorak, Kreisler, and Paganini. He met each 
ot these creative personalities on his own ground, yet with indi- 
vidual perspective and within a self-appointed scale of values, 
achieved effects of much variety and artistic value. Mr. Szigeti 
never relied upon superfìcial means for his results. He was always 
the fimshed virtuoso, the distinctive musician. 

"There was a lightning change from the radiant Mozart to the 
savage, rhapsodic Orientalism of Ernest Bloch. His two pieces 
'Vidui' and 'Nigun' are masterly in their brevity and intensification 
ol mood. They say much in little, and are Hebraic in the emotional 
force and the jagged contour of the melodies. They were given 
their true character, their utmost signifìcance by Mr. Szigeti, and 
this without an instant of ugliness, roughness or bad taste. The 
tone assumed a new sensuousness and there was a dramatic accent 
that would have been unexpected in a less intuitive player." 

_ Szigeti's successes in Russia were extraordinary. As a proof of 
this, the government has invited him three successive times to play 



in the leading cities of that country. He was invited there together 
with the famous conductor, Otto Klemperer, to play as soloist at the 
Beethoven Festivals there in April of 1927. 

The author was present at Szigeti's farewell concert on March 
24, 1926, in New York. It wàs extraordinary in many respects. 
In the fìrst place, Szigeti had as a companion the famous Swiss 
pianist, Walter Gieseking. The afternoon was given to playing 
sonatas of Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven. The ensemble was per- 
fect, and Szigeti's playing recalled the golden days of Joachim, to 
whom Szigeti can well be likened, if there is such a thing as com- 
parison in the world of mature art. 

Szigeti is a young man of medium height, with an attractive 
stage personality. He is an accomplished linguist, and writes and 
speaks English fluently. He has made a study of American music 
and has played several premieres of American works. 

He now makes his home in Paris. 


Toscha Seidel's tone is singularly sweet and clear ; and technical- 
ly he is as near perfection as human skill can hope to come. As a 
boy of seven he astonished audiences in Warsaw, not alone by his 
phenomenal ability in playing, but by his 
precocious musical sense that was obvi- 
ous in performances. His progress has 
attracted world-wide notice, and he is 
today one of the most admired violinists 
in the world. 

Toscha Seidel's playing is like the 
wines of Burgundy: of a deep purple, 
warm, sparkling and mellow. The con- 
trast between him and his fellow-student, 
Jascha Heifetz, was summarized by a 
certain critic, who said : "Jascha Heifetz 
is the angel of the violin, while Toscha 
Seidel is its devil." There is a wild pas- 
sion and abandon in Toscha's playing 
that is not to be found in these days of cultured and sober 

Toscha Seidel was born in Odessa, Russia. His mother was a 
school teacher, his father a business man, and his uncle, Beerman, 
a well-known violinist. Toscha at the age of three "chose" his 
uncle's profession. He was "a boy born with a fìddle in his hand." 

His first teacher was Max Fiedelmann, a pupil of Auer. Once 

252 Famous Musicians of a Wander ing Race 

Tf h M- h Ì S ™f Cher ' s , brother » Alexander Fiedelmann (fìrst teacher 
of Mischa Elman), heard the boy play a De Veriot concerto when 
he was eight years old, he was so impressed that he made arrange- 
ments for him to enter the Stern Conservatory in Berlin. In 1912 
loscha Seidel was sent to Auer, spending his summers in Dresden 

ChlàlZ T m F !^ rR ?' In 1915 the b °y made h is ^èbut in 
Chnstiania, playing the Tschaikowsky "Concerto." He gave other 
concerts m Scandinavia, and made his fìrst public appearance in 
Petrograd m April, 1916. Then followed a long concert tour 
- Seidel, who represents the fruition of Auer's formative gifts, 
has to quote H. F. Peyser, "the transcendental technique observed 
in the greatest pupils of the master, a command of mechanism 
which makes the rough places so smooth that the traces of their 
roughness are hidden from the unpracticed eye." Speaking of his 
masters methods, Toscha said once: "Professor Auer always 
taught us to play as individuals, and while he never allowed us to 
oyerstep the boundaries of the musically aesthetic, he gave our in- 
dividuahty free play within its limits. When playing for him if 
once I came to a passage which demanded an especially beautif ul 
Iegato rendering, he would say: 'Now show how you can sing'' 
The exquisite legato he taught was all a matter of perfect bowing 
and as he often said : 'There must be no such things as strings and 
hair m the pupil's consciousness. One must not play violin one 
must sing violin.' " ' 

Auer's classes were held on Wednesdays and Saturdays, at the 
Petrograd Conservatory. Those were the gala days ! All the pupils 
used to stop m front of Auer's studio, listening to hìs great pupils' 
playmg. Once (in 1913) while I was on my way to take my 'cello 
lesson m an ad.ioining chamber on the famous third floor of the 
Conservatory I also stopped to listen. The marvelous strains of 
Eeethoven s Concerto" were issuing from the room into the cor- 
™" , Such P ] aying should have been that of a mature master. 
A httle boy emerged from the classroom, dressed in a sailor's suit 
A woman of a southern type, who had been very restless, claspecì 

him in her arms. It was Seidel and his mother. The students 

^oked wide-eyed on the prodigy. On those days when Seidel, 
Heiletz, or Ceciha Hensen played, some other of Auer's pupils 
wno came prepared to take their lessons, and whose turn happened 
to be immediately after those geniuses of the bow, would lose con- 
hdence and fìnd all kinds of excuses for not playing on that day 

Toscha's mother was much concerned with her son's academic 
and worldly education. She engaged the services of a Russian- 
German professor of philosophy and mathematics, a certain Pro- 
fessor Galatzky, who was tutor and guide to Toscha and his brother 
durmg their travels in Scandinavia and in America. In 1916 I met 



Auer and his "court suite" at the famous resort, Voxenkollen, near 
Christiania. There were Seidel and Heifetz, with their families, 
Burgin, Max Rosen, Stassevitsch, May Bang (a talented violinist, 
armies during the war. In 1919, he made his New York debut in 
and daughter of a Christiania bishop). There I became a close 
friend of the charming Seidel family. Toscha was called by the 
Norwegians "Tosca," and for a long time he and Jascha Heifetz 
held sway over the city, and the hearts and ears thereof . The main 
music hall in Christiania was occupied by these two for weeks in 
succession — Toscha and Jascha alternating. The dark-headed boy 
captivated Norwegian hearts even more than the fair-headed one. 
During that time, in one of the Norwegian dailies, the following 
joke bearing on the subject of the boy's name, was printed: "A 
man in the street car, dressed in evening clothes, asked his neigh- 
bor, 'And where are you going, Hans?' 'I am going to hear Tosca 
of Puccini, and you V 'l am going to hear Tosca of Seidel.' " 

Toscha with his mother and brother and tutor, lived in the 
city of Christiania, and not at Voxenkollen, where some of the 
other Auer students lived. The reason for this was two-fold — 
economy, and the great f reedom allowed the students at dormitories 
in which they lived to practice whenever they wanted, while those 
living at the hotel had much trouble on that account. 

Auer, in his reminiscences, speaks much of Seidel, and relates 
the details of his dual concert with Heifetz before the King and 
Queen of Norway. 

Coming to America from Europe in 1918, Seidel instantly won 
recognition as a bright light of the violin world. Of his New Yòrk 
debut, W. J. Henderson of the Sun said: "He plays with' dashing 
grace and great brilliance," and the late H. E. Krehbiel of the 
Tribune wrote: "In dash and fire, breadth of bowing, solidity and 
richness of tone, his performance was unforgettable." 

The Chicago Evening Post said : "Toscha Seidel settled all pos- 
sible questions as to his power as a virtuoso." The Minneapolis 

Journal found him "a giant of the violin." The St. Paul Daily 
thought him "an uncanny blend of technique and fire — a very 
flower of Slavic genius." The Detroit Free Press discovered action 
and life in his playing. Each city found new wonders in his art. 

From Australia, where Seidel made a tour in 1923-24, also came 
many flattering reports regarding his successes there. That was 
Seidel's first tour of the Antipodes and it meant his complete con- 
quest of both Australia and New Zealand. 

On his tour of Europe in 1925, he played a series of recitals in 
Christiania, and every concert was sold out days in advance. In 
Paris, Le Gaulois said: "He possesses an impeccable virtuosity." 
His playing of the incredibly diflicult Brahms "Concerto" elicited 

2 54 Fa mous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

n n M t?^ M n l thG remark that " Kl ' ei ^' at his best did not 
play the Brahms Concerto with more animated passion than this 
youth who ' Bhowed no intimidation at its oppressive traditions, 
ìather handlmg it heartily, whereby the music lived more warmly " 
hv t^if ™ TA^T ° f Me » dels sohn's "Concerto" is in a class 
by itself Thread-hke, his tone undulates upon the air. Light are 
the mflections he plays upon it. Sunshine and shadow no more than 
npp e over it. Fme-spun are the transitions, a modulation is a mere 
touch of bow and fìnger; rhythm stirs rather than beats; ara- 
oesques are tracery on gossamer. 

Toscha Seidel and his brother, Vladimir, suffered an irreparable 
loss m the death of their mother, on April 26, 1925, in England 
aiter a short ìllness. 


ìT^« GARI 1 N u VÌOl ! nÌSt ' Singer ' won great fame as a virtuoso, 
pedagogue, and chamber music player. He was born on October 
14, 1831, and received his musical education in Budapest under 
Ellinger and Professor Ridely Cohen. 
After several concert tours, he went to 
Vienna, where he fìnished his violin 
studies under Professor Preyer. From 
1851 on, Singer made concert tours 
through Europe, which were highly suc- 

In 1854 Singer was invited to Weimar 
on Liszt's recommendation to succeed 
Ferdinand Laub as court concert master 
and chamber music player, but in 1861 
he moved on Meyerbeer's invitation to' 
Stuttgart. Here he took the post of Pro- 
fessor at the Conservatory, and was also 
concert master for a long time. 

nnllvnf r W i n T aS a com P° ser of viol in compositions, princi- 
pal y of an elementary nature. He wrote many etudes, capdccios 
anc fantasias and also arranged and edited many class c pieces for 

vlo ln pHyhfg m Sch ° o1 




Jenny Skolnik, scion of a very musical Russian family, and 
gifted young violinist, was born in Odessa, Russia, in February of 
1896. Her fìrst teacher was Sitt. Later she studied under Fiedel- 
man (the teacher of Toscha Seidel), fin- 
ishing her studies under Carl Flesch. Her 
brother, Ilya Skolnik, is the well-known 
concert master of the Detroit Symphony 
Orchestra, and her sister, Marie Skolnik- 
Wellerson, was a gifted 'cellist (who has 
a young daughter, Mila Wellerson, al- 
ready well known as a player on the same 
instrument) . 

Jenny Skolnik is now living in the 
United States, from where she uncler- 
takes very successful concert tours 
through the musical centers of Europe, 
and America. 


Max Mossel, the younger brother of the famous Dutch 'cellist, 
Isaac Mossel, was born in Amsterdam on July 25, 1871, and like 
his brother showed his musical predilections at an early age. He 
studied the violin with Willy Hess and Sarasate, and made his 
dèbut at the age of fifteen, as soloist for the Hommel Orchestral 
Society, in Holland, in October, 1876. 

On July 5, 1892, he appeared, this time also as soloist, at the 
Crystal Palace Saturday Evening Concerts in England. Since 
then Max Mossel has made numerous wide tours and has estab- 
lished a reputation as one of Holland's great violin virtuosi. 

He is at present director of the Max Mossel concerts in the 
chief cities of Great Britain, and Professor of the Guildhall 
School of Music in London, being intimately connected with that 
country's musical life. 

256 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Helen Tesciiner Tas, daughter of an internationally known 
physician, Dr. Jacob Teschner, was born in New York on May 24, 
1889. She began the study of the violin when she was five years 
old, her flrst teacher being Nahan Franko 
and her second, Sigmund Deutsch. At 
seven years of age she made her initial 
public appearance, playing at Chickering 
Hall, and was announced by the Musical 
Courier as "certainly the most remark- 
able chilcì violinist, who has ever ap- 
peared in this country within present re- 
collection, if ever." 

With her entrance at Dr. Julius Sach's 
private school, Helen Teschner discon- 
tinued her appearance as a child prodigy. 
Violin studies with Henry Schradick and 
George Lehman filled the years until she 
went to Germany for further musical 
study. Her teachers abroacl were Carl Flesch and Willy Hess. In 
1909 she made her cìèbut with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra 
under Ernst Kunwald, playing Bach and Bruch concertos and the 
Beethoven "Romanzes." Recitals in Berlin and Vienna followed 
and other orchestral appearances at which she performed the 
Brahms and Beethoven concertos, Lalo's "Symphonie Espagnole" 
and Bruch's "Scotch Fantasie." 

In 1913 Helen Teschner married Emile Tas, son of Louis Tas, of 
Amsterdam, Holland, and relinquished her professional career for 
a period of seven years. Mr. and Mrs. Tas macle their home in New 
York, where the violinist appeared at a private benefit concert in 
1915 as soloist in the Brahms "Concerto" with the New York Phil- 

Her fìrst public appearance in New York was at Aeolian Hall 
in 1920. These were followed the next season by a recital in Bos- 
ton with the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Mengel- 
berg, when she was heard in the Brahms and Mendelssohn 

An appearance with the New York Philharmonic under Mengel- 
berg, on which occasion she played Mozart's A major Concerto, 
took place the next season, and one in Holland with the Concertge- 
bouw Orchestra during the violinist's visit to Amsterdam. Helen 
Teschner Tas participated during the summer of 1923 in the con- 
certs of American music given in Paris by Lazare Saminsky, at 



which she introduced Albert Elkus's "Concertino after Ariosti," 
Lazare Saminsky's "Hebrew Rhapsody," and shorter works by Al- 
bert Stoessel, Emerson Whithorne, and Frederick Jacobi. 

American orchestral appearances the succeeding season were 
with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra under Ossip Gabrilowitsch, 
and with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra under Walter 
Henry Rothwell. In the Spring of 1924, Mme Tas gave a series of 
recitals in Holland. Upon her return to America she participated 
in concerts of the American Music Guild and the League of Com- 
posers. Among the works she gave first hearings on these pro- 
grams are: Louis Gruenberg's second Sonata and Alexander 
Tscherepnine's Sonata. Last season the violinist was heard with 
Arthur Loesser in three semi-public chamber music programs at 
Steinway Hall. 


Mischa Weisbord began his violin studies at an early age under 
his father, who is an accomplished musician. He brought the boy 
to St. Petersburg (Leningrad) and entered him in the Conserva- 
tory when the young violinist was nine years old. He could play 
the most complicated compositions from memory. Glazounoff 
heard him play, gave him a scholarship, and placed him in the 
most advanced class. The young violinist then studied music un- 
der a number of famous teachers, including Auer, and was coached 
for a time by Paul Kochanski. During the war and the revolution 
Mischa and his father escaped to Siberia and gave concerts there. 

Some of the New York managers heard him play, and wished 
to engaged him for tours at once. But the father decided to go 
once more with the boy to Europe. He studied with Cesar Thomp- 
son and Hubay, and gave concerts in all the European centers. In 
London young Weisbord gave a private recital for a phonograph 
company which gave him the money to continue his progress. The 
violinist then went to Berlin for further concertizing and study, 
and then toured Germany and the Scandinavian countries. In 
Stockholm two years ago, Wejsbord was given a tremendous ova- 
tion. His ten concerts there were immediately sold out within 
a few hours after the tickets went on sale. 

Coming to New York, Weisbord made his dèbut at Carnegie 
Hall on February 23, 1926, justifying all expectations of his for- 
mer New York friends, and receiving glowing tributes from the 
press. Mischa Weisbord has a smooth flowing tone, brilliant tech- 
nical attainment, and an intellectual grasp of his subject matter, 
gained in his many wanderings around the globe. 

258 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Few violinists succeeded more thoroughly in captivating their 
audiences than the famous violin virtuoso, Henry Wieniawski, 
whose impetuous Polish-Hebraic temperament, with its warm and' 
tender feelings, gave color to his play- 
ing. He was undoubteclly the greatest 
technician of his time. Wieniawsky is 
significant also as a composer. His com- 
positions are, designed primarily for 
virtuosity effects. Who, for example, is 
not acquainted with his celebrated vio- 
lin concertos in D minor and F sharp 
minor, his two "Polonnaises," his famous 
"Fantasy on the Faust Motive," his 
"Legend," his "Mazurkas," and numer- 
ous other monuments to his art? 

Wieniawski was born on July 10, 
1835, in Lublin, Russian Poland, where 
his father practiced medicine. He was 
taken to Paris by his mother when he was only eight years old, 
and entered the Conservatoire, where he joined Massart's class. 
When only eleven he gained the first prize for violin playing, after 
which he made a concert tour in Poland and Russia. Soon, how- 
ever, he returned to Paris to resume his studies, especially in 
composition. Together with his brother Josef, an excellent pianist, 
he went again in 1850 on a concert tour through the Netherlands 
England, Germany, and Russia. 

In 1860 he received the appointment of solo violinist to the 
Czar of Russia, and held that position for about ten years in St. 
Petersburg, after which he resignecì. In his book, My Long Life 
tn Music, Auer speaks thus of Wieniawski : "He was delightful 
company. He was always saying something that provoked laugh- 
ter, always full of puns and anecdotes. He was never serious, 
save when his violin in his hands, he commenced to practice; but 
he practiced several hours a day. As regards the court, he was 
such a favorite there that no serious objection was made to his 
habitual late-coming to the performances. One day he had been 
asked to play at a soirèe-musicale at the house of one of the rich- 
est bankers in St. Petersburg. At those affairs the Baron was ac- 
customed to entertain the most aristocratic society of the capital. 
The day after the soirèe, Wieniawski received a letter from the' 
Baron containing a bank note for 100 roubles and the Baron's 
card on which he had written 'with a thousand thanks/ Wieniaw- 



ski, furious, at once put the 100 rouble note in an envelope, to- 
gether with his own card, on which he scribbled: 'I should have 
preferred a thousand roubles with a hundred thanks.' Baron X, 
delighted, sent him the 1,000 roubles the following day." 

In 1862 he was invited to take a position as professor at the 
St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he remained five years. It 
was at the conclusion of this engagement that he made his tour 
in the United States with Anton Rubinstein, who was his intimate 
friend. When the great pianist returned to Europe, Wieniawski 
remained in America and succeeded in making a large fortune 
by his performances. 

This tour was cut short toward the end of 1874 by a telegram 
from Brussels, offering him the professorship in violin at the con- 
servatory there, during the illness of Vieuxtemps. When Vieux- 
temps recovered, Wieniawski resumed his tours. During one of 
those concerts he was seized by a sudden spasm and compelled to 
stop in the middle of the Bach "Chaconne." Joachim was among 
the guests. He came to the rescue, taking up Wieniawski's violin 
and finishing the program. Notwithstanding his great physical 
suffering, Wieniawski continued on his tour, but in Odessa he 
broke down altogether. He died on April 2, 1880. 

It is stated as a fact, although it sounds improbable, that this 
unusual violinist died friendless and poor in a Moscow hospital, 
and that he was buried by public charity. But his son Jules con- 
tradicts this, stating that his father died in the house of the 
Countess Meck, and was buried by Czar Alexander III, of whom 
he was the friend as well as the favorite violinist. A third version 
is that he was buried in Warsaw by his friends and relatives. 
One is reminded of the tomb of Moses, the whereabouts of which 
no mortal is supposed to know. 


A musician and virtuoso of uncommon ability, Oscar Zuccarini 
is one of the very few contemporary great Italian violinists. He 
was born in Rome on February 19, 1888 and studied at the Royal 
Liceo Musicale di Santa Cecilia under Ettore Pineli. Zuccarini 
played solo under Schneevoight, both in Kiev and Riga, and gave 
successful concerts at the Augusteo in Italy. Since 1913 he has 
been concert master of the Augusteo Orchestra, and has played in 
the Trio Romano and the Quinteto Cristiani. He is at present first 
violinist of the new Quarteto di Roma. 

260 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Although born in Russia, Zimbalist is in many respects an 
American artist. He makes his home in New York City and 
spends most of his time in America. He has become one of the 
great factors in the musical life of New 
York, and is constantly in demand, not 
only for concerts, but as a judge in mu- 
sical competitions of all sorts, and as a 
musical adviser. 

^ Zimbalist, owner of the famous "Ti- 
tian" Stradivarius violin, commands per- 
haps the most beautif ul tone to be heard 
today. His contribution to music is 
purely musical rather than technical, al- 
though he is one of the great virtuosi of 
all time. He has brought forward much 
beautiful new music. American com- 
posers have found in Zimbalist a pro- 
found exponent and a brilliant inter- 
preter of their works. 
As a composer, Zimbalist has distinguished himself not only in 
his contributions to the literature for the violin, but also as a 
writer of songs and piano pieces. Although eminently a serious 
musician, he has given to the light opera stage a highly successful 
musical play : "Honeydew," which had its première in New Haven, 
Connecticut, and was subsequently played with great success all 
over the United States. 

There is hardly a city in which Zimbalist has not played, nor is 
there a symphony orchestra of importance with which he has not 
appeared frequently as soloist. 

"Mr. Zimbalist's playing, coming after the vast deal of fiddling 
that we have heard lately, was refreshing in its artistic ma- 
turity," said the New YorJc Tribune. The New York Times wrote: 
Mr. Zimbalist gave a superb performance of the Glazounoff Con- 
certo. It was a performance of gorgeously rich tone, entrancing 
cantilena, and in the florid passages, brilliant and accurate." The 
Evenincj Worlcl saicl: "In this year of a remarkable invasion by 
foreign fiddlers, Mr. Zimbalist's sound musicianship and big tone 
enabled him to more than hold his own. It was masterly playing." 

Efrem Zimbalist was born in Rostov-on-the-Don, Russia, on . 
April 9, 1889. His first teacher, as in the case of Heifetz, Elman, 
Kochanski, the Piastros, and others of the world's greatest, was 
his father, who was an orchestra conductor. In the autumn of 



1903 Efrem entered Auer's classes at the Conservatory in St. 
Petersburg (Leningrad) and was the forerunner of the famous 
coterie. Elman entered the conservatory one year later, then fol- 
lowed Heifetz, Seidel, and the others. Speaking of the humilia- 
tions and hardships the parents of the great Jewish violinists had 
to bear on account of the old Czarist laws in Holy Russia, Auer 
says sympathetically in My Long Life in Music : 

"Similar difRculties arose with regard to Efrem Zimbalist, 
only in his case the one who suffered was his mother, who had 
accompanied him to St. Petersburg in order to place him with 
some family or other willing to take care of the boy, then between 
thirteen and fourteen years old. In this quest she spent several 
days with no success, meanwhile persecuted by the police. With- 
out means and therefore unable to grease the palms of the guar- 
dians of public safety, she was forced to leave her son's room one 
evening under menace of arrest. So mother and son were forced 
to walk the streets of St. Petersburg during the cold October 
nights, when the temperature sometimes dropped below zero. 
They wandered hither and thither, stopping to warm themselves 
in the all-night restaurants which catered to the factory hands 
working on night shifts and to the droshky drivers. And I never 
even suspected the depths of misery to which this poor mother 
had been reduced in her search of a lodging for her son. One 
morning when I had hardly arisen, Mme Zimbalist and her son 
were announced. Shivering with cold, they had come in to warm 
themselves and to ask my help. This time it was a question of a 
permit to remain in the city for a few days, something not so 
difficult to procure ; yet what physical and moral suffering had they 
not endured in the meantime! I was not personally acquainted 
with the current chief of police of St. Petersburg, but I wrote him 
a letter in which I pointed out the wretchedness of this poor 
mother, who was merely looking for a place where she could leave 
her child, laid stress on the boy's great talent, and in addition, 
assumed all responsibility for the infraction of the law involved. 
As a result I had the satisfaction of being notified that permission 
was accorded Mme Zimbalist to remain in the capital an entire 
week. How her heart must have grieved when she was obliged to 
leave this inhospitable city, to entrust her child to the keeping of 
strangers, and to face the depressing prospect of never being able 
to visit him when her mother-love prompted," 

After the Russo-Japanese war, there occurred throughout Rus- 
sia so-called "school-strikes," and expression of revolt against exist- 
ing authorities, who caused so many lives to be needlessly ex- 
tinguished in an inglorious war. The striking students refused 
to attend the classes of the royalist-teachers. A similar strike 

262 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Raoe 

took place, of course, at the St. Petersburg Conservatory. There 
were also neutral". professors. Auer, in his reminiscences, re- 
lates regarding that turbulent period in Russia : 

"As for myself who wished to have nothing at all to do with 
pohtics, I belonged to the latter class, which was regarded Z th 
suspicion by the strikers, who picketed the stairs and halls leading 
to the class rooms. Among the most (iery and jealous of the 
^in'n'f W1 ° K rbade U ; e Ì r c ° llea gues to visit the dassrooms on 
^"°„. a *» t,n * was Efrem Zimbalist, then fourteen or fifteen 

mv WaS , a PI . Ck u et ° n a gUard in the corrl <lors leading to 

my classroom, and watched all those who attended my classes 
Whenever he met me in the corridor he would salute me proudly 
and continue to tramp his beat." y 
Zimbalist was graduated from the Petrograd Conservato>-y as 

hipTlloo'^r 0 ™^ 0 ' l° M m f dal an<1 the R«bi"stein scholar! 
rì*h,,t , i ? Ub J, eS - Novem ber 7, 1907, he made his Berlin 

clebut, playing the Brahm's Concerto, and at once becamo 
famous. Shortly afterwards, he made his flrst London appearan^e 

ct^TErpe 190 ^ a,,d then — d Ìn ™* " <^ ef 
I first met Zimbalist in Leipzig (where I was studying at the 
Conservatory under Prof. Julius Klengel, and was a mèmber of 
the Gewandhaus Orchestra under Arthur Nikisch). Zimbahst was 
the soloist with this Orchestra on January 1, 1910, playingX 
Glazounoff Concerto in A minor. I can still remember the ex 

The e cHv mP ,f SSÌOn kft ? me by thÌS Sreat fiddler and m ,s e ci:„; 

T followln S. « certain Mr. Eugene Simpsen, the Leipzig cor 
espondent for the Musical Courier of New York called on me at 

Zw, 011 ? 6 -- He aS ' !ed me t0 follow him t0 the "ouse of a weh 
known Le lP z,g surgeon, Dr. Barban, and to take my 'cello ahlng 
We amved at our hosfs house at about two in the afteinoon 
There met Zimbalist, Schmuller, the two pianists, Leonui IKreu l 
Dr M Tel , emaqu T e Lambrino, and an old gentleman of abÒut s x?y, 
renti™ f ' • T S , t0 ' d hy the 8 ' uests that the amiable old 
fhTt WaS h ' S day a favorite P U P« of Wieniawski, but 

m,«t A UP u a nl ; onlisin S P llbli « ™™ at the altar, on the re- 
quest of his nch and .jealous bride. 

After dinner, a quartet was organized. Dr. Margulies, whom 
hose present respected for his excellent musicianship and vlr" 
tuosrty played the first violin; Zimbalist was modest enough to 
play the second violin Schmuller played the viola and I played 
the cello. We played several quartets of Mozart, Haydn and 
Beethoven, as well as Brahms' F minor Quintet with Leonkl 

Dvo?k r; Th , at6r ' WÌ l h Lambrin0 - the Piano Quartet of 
Dvoiak. The playmg contmued until after midnight, with occa- 



sional interruptions, when I had the opportunity to observe Zim- 
balist at close range. This gifted young man was the soul of the 
gathering and a charming gentleman. I also heard him that 
evening accompany one of the violinists at the piano. He has an 
uncommon gift for accompanying. That afternoon and evening are 
among the most pleasant of my life, and I will never forget it. 

His American dèbut Zimbalist made on October 27, 1911, with 
the Boston Symphony Orchestra, giving the fìrst performance in 
America of Glazounoff's A minor Concerto. He was imme- 
diately hailed as an artist of unusual merit. 

Zimbalist's list of novelties is amazing. He has introduced two 
American concertos — those of Schelling and Powell, as well as 
one by Frederick Stock. He was the fìrst to play the music of the 
Norwegian master, Tor Aulin, and he was also the first to recog- 
nize the compositions of Albert Spalding. 

On June 15, 1914, in London, Zimbalist married the famous 
soprano, Alma Gluck, to whom he has since often acted as accom- 
panist in her tours. 

Those who meet Zimbalist personally will find him a smiling 
man with a straightforward manner and address, and a re- 
luctance to speak of his successes. He has no affectations. Despite 
his fame, he is not convinced that he knows everything about 
making music on his instrument, and he still confers frequently 
with his illustrious teacher, Leopold Auer. Although about eighty 
years old, Professor Auer has not aged musically and is as keen 
a listener and as helpful a guide as ever he was — a fact which 
Zimbalist fìnds of great advantage. 

The friendship of the old master and his celebrated pupil is 
deeply rooted. In 1925 Zimbalist, with the cooperation of Jascha 
Heifetz (whom he also accompanied at the piano on that occasion), 
organized a gala concert in honor of Professor Auer's birthday. 
He enlisted the aid of Josef Hofmann, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Ossip 
Gabrilowitsch, Siloti, Achron and Stassewitsh. The concert netted 
a very large sum. The most striking moment of the evening came 
when Zimbaìist and Heifetz played a triple concerto with Leopold 
Auer, who still plays with the art and fìre of his virtuoso days. 

Aside from his operetta "Honeydew," Zimbalist also composed 
a "Suite in old Form" for violin and piano (1911) ; Three Slavic 
Dances (1911) ; "Fantasy on the Motives of Rimsky-KorsakofFs 
■'Le Coque d'Or' " ; arrangements for the violin, and many other 
works. Zimbalist's most recent composition is a Sonata for vio- 
lin and piano, in G minor, which received its fìrst performance in 
Carnegie Hall, New York, on March 5, 1926, with Emanuel Bay 
at the piano. 

In 1925, Zimbalist made a tour of the Orient, receiving a royal 

264 Famous Musicians of g Wanderìng Race 

of ^hTlvlH T i 6 appeared ' He is much in dem <™ d in all partB 
,1^ 1' T ld always Plays t0 sold " out houses - He ^ppears as 
soloist regularly every seaaon on one of the Metropolitan Opera 
House Sunday Eyenmg Concerts, as well as with the New York 
Philharmonic and New York Symphony Orchestras. 
mn,7 nTl Z ™ halist . is * >PPy personality, and a favorite in the 
most contrasted social circles. He is the beloved of his fellow 
Jews, and one can often hear him in concerts of a specifìcally Jew- 
ish nature, on which occasion he often plays some of his own 
tianscriptions of traditional national Jewish airs. The home of 
musicl7f ng aiKÌ gl ' eat musician is the center of Ne w York's 


This excellent artist, born at Groningen, Holland, on July 19, 
1873 received his first lessons from his father, and afterward's 
studied with P. Ortman. In 1890 he went to Leipzig, wh^e he 
had the adyantage of receiving lessons from Hans Sitt, and after- 
wards to Brussels, where he studied with Ysaye. He then made 
a tour of Holland and visited Hamburg, Frankfort, and other Ger- 
man towns, his performances meeting with unvarying success. In 
1896 he was appointed Hofconcertmeister and soloist of the Court 
Orchestra at Darmstadt and from 1899 to 1904 he held the post 
of solo violmist of the celebrated Concertgebouw Orchestra in 
Amsterdam. In 1898 he played before Queen Victoria at Osborne. 

f + ? aS TT P ayed before his own sovei, eign, Queen Wilhelmina, 
at tne Hague. ' 

Louis Zimmerman made his first public appearance before an 
Enghsh audience when he playecì the solo violin part in Richard 
btiauss s Ein Heldenleben," on its initial performance in Eng- 
ono U n com Poser's direction, at Queen's Hall, December 6, 

1J0Z. On that occasion he made a distinctly favorable impression. 

P^P" of Carl Reinecke, he has produced several compositions 
among others a quintet for clarinet and strings 

Zimmermann also wrote a violin concerto (first performed in 
Amsterdam m 1921) ; variations for violin and orchestra; a string 
quartet, smaller pieces for violin and piano, and songs. 




Ljef Zeitlin, Russian violinist, one of the foimders of the now 
famous "Conductor-less Orchestra" in Moscow, Russia, of which 
he has been chairman since its organization in 1922, has won for 
himself a place of honor in the hearts of his music-loving country- 
men, because of his great musical talent and energy. So great a 
conductor as Otto Klemperer declared that he fìrmly believes in the 
growth and development of this idea of Zeitlin's. 

Ljef Zeitlin was born in Russia on March 14, 1881. He was one 
of Auer's violin pupils at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, being 
graduated in 1901. He became a member of the Colonne Orchestra 
in Paris, as well as of the Zeitlin Quartet, which he organized and 
which has since won esteem among its kindred organizations, In 
1910 he became concertmaster at the Zimny Theatre in Moscow, 
and later held the same post in Koussevitzky's Orchestra there. 

This excellent musician and executive is now professor at the 
Music School of the Moscow Philharmonic Society. 



Evsei Beloussoff, eminent Russian 'cellist, was born in Moscow 
in 1881. He entered the Imperial Moscow Conservatory at the 
age of eight. His entire musical education was directed by Was- 
sily SafonofF (at the time director of the 
Moscow Conservatory) and Professor 
Alfred von Glehn, a pupil of Charles 
Davidoff. He was graduated in 1903 
and was awarded the gold medal, the 
highest prize of the Conservatory. At 
the time of this award his name was en~ 
graved on the marble tablets of the con- 
sfervatory to join those of many illus- 
trious predecessors, among them: Tane- 
ieff, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff, Siloti, and 
others. In 1910 he received the prize in 
a contest of 'cellists from all parts of 

Before the war, Safonoff returned 
from America and toured through the capitals of Europe with 
Beloussoif. During this period they played sonatas. Beloussoff 
also appeared as soloist when Safonoff conducted the leading or- 
chestras of Europe. 

When, during the revolution, the musical centre of Russia 
shifted from Moscow and Petrograd to Southern Russia, Beloussoff 
became Professor at the Rimsky-Korsakoff Conservatory in Khar- 
kov. He became one of the leaders of musical activity there, and 
organized many chamber music cycles, which were participated in 
by the leading musicians in Russia. In 1921 he and Alexander 
Borovsky, pianist, gave twenty-three concerts in Tiflis within the 
short period of three and a half months, playing every concert to 
capacity houses. In these twenty-three concerts Beloussoff ap- 
peared not only as soloist and in chamber-music, but conducted 
the Civic Opera Orchestra in a cycle of symphony concerts. In 
1922 he played in Paris, Vienna, Prague, Berlin, Dresden, Leipzig, 
Frankfort, Wiesbaden, and other cities, and before coming to Am- 
erica, toured through Poland, Finland, Esthonia, and Lithuania. 

During the season of 1923-24, Beloussoff made his fìrst Am- 
erican tour, which carried him from coast to coast. He appeared 
as soloist in concerts, being acclaimed by critics and audiences 
alike as a brilliant artist of the highest order. Beloussoff's per- 
sonality is engaging and dignifìed. In New York he married the 
daughter of the late well-known philanthropist, Max Levy. 


270 Famous Musìcians of a Wandering Race 


The greatest 'cellist of the nineteenth century, and perhaps of all 
time was Carl Davidoff. His playing was extraordinarilydegant 
and he could gracefully overcome all technical difflculties. He was 
born on March 17, 1838, in Goldringer, 
Russia, and educated in Moscow, where 
in 1858 he was graduated from the Uni- 
versity as a mathematician. His musical 
education began in childhood when he 
chose the 'cello as his instrument. He 
studied at fìrst under Smith in Moscow, 
and later under Carl Schubert in St! 

In 1859 Davidoff went to Leipzig 
where he studied theory and composi- 
tion with Hauptmann. From 1859 to 
1861 he was solo 'cellist at the Leipzig 
Gewandhaus; after the death of Grutz- 
macher, he was appointed 'cello teacher 
„ . at the Leipzig Conservatory. 

Havmg made seyeral concert tours, Davidoff returned to St. 
Petersburg where he was invited to become soloist of the St. 
Petersburg Itahan Opera (1861-77). From 1862 to 1865 he gave 
lectures on history of music at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, 
and after Schubert's death (1863) was appointed Professor of the 

wtt^ÌT' ^\ the ** me time > he was appointed soloist of the 
.kmpress court band. 

• D i a ^ d °? c ° nt . 1,ibuted milc h eifort to the newly organized Im- 
perial Music Society. From 1866 to 1867 he was director of the 
bt. Petersburg Conservatory. As an administrator, he was un- 
tmng. He won the love of both colleagues and pupils by his 
humanity and kmdness. y 

As a 'cellist he was immensely popular both in Russia and 
abroad. He toured England, France, Belgium, Germany and Rus- 
sia. Besides a large and beautiful tone, his playing was noble 
elegant, and technically perfect. Davidoff was a favorite of the 
i««o ^ 1110 !^ 1161 ' crowned heads. When he died on February 26, 
1889 m Moscow, the Imperial Court attended his funeral 

As a composer Davidoff had great talent and a refined taste, 
but unfortunately he left only a few works. "Gifts of Terek " a 
symphonic poem for orchestra, an orchestra suite, four concertos 
lor cello ;> Am Spring-Brunnen," "Allegro de Concert," a "Russian 
l<antasy for 'cello, piano quintet, string quartet, string sextet an 



excellent "School for Violoncello," and songs. He also left an 
unfinishecl opera, "Mazeppa," the libretto of which he turned over 
during his life to Tschaikowsky, who made use of it for his opera 
of the same name. 

Leopold Auer, with whom Davidoff was associated at the St. 
Petersburg Conservatory, as well as in their famous string quar- 
tet, says in My Long Life ìn Music: 

"Davidoff was a musical virtuoso of the fìrst class. He en- 
riched the 'cèllo repertory with several concertos and other com- 
positions of real merit, some of which are still — nearly f orty years 
after his death — holding their own on concert programs and 'cello 
curricula, and will, it seems to me, continue to do so for many 
years to come. He was a man gentle and timid by nature, yet 
gifted with a fund of real energy which disclosed itself only on 
rare occasions. At the least opposition of resistance, he withdrew 
himself and shut up like a clam. Owing to him and to its presi- 
dent, the Grand Duke Constantine, the Russian Music Society and 
the Conservatoire became Imperial institutions." 


Despite tiie fact that the 'cello fulfìlls more functions than any of 
its stringed brethren, despite the fact that musicians and critics 
have considered it the leader of the stringed flock for a long time, 
it is only recently that it has received its 
due from the general public. 

There are two reasohs why recogni- 
tion has come to this instrument so slow- 
ly — there have been few great masters 
of it and amateurs play it with only the 
most agonizing results, for it is very dif- 
fìcult. Its size is unwieldy and its strings 
twice the length of the violin strings. 
Feuermann was the master of it at the 
age of fourteen. 

He was born in Kolomea, Austria, on 
November 22, 1902, and comes from a 
very cultivated musical family. His 
father, Marx Feuermann, still active as a 
violin and 'cello teacher in Vienna, was Emanuel's fìrst teacher 
when the latter was only fìve years old. 

A few years later, the Feuermann family went to Vienna 
where Emanuel became a pupil of Anton Walter (a wonderfui 
'cellist himself, and member of the Rose Quartet in Vienna), with 

272 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

whom he studied for three years. At eleven, he gave his first 
dèbut in public, and at fourteen he toured Germany and Austria, 
being appreciated by critics and audiences. It was at that youth- 
ful age that he played under Arthur Nikisch at the Gewandhaus 
in Leipzig, and under Felix Weingartner at the Philharmony in 

In 1917 Feuermann went to Leipzig to study with the famous 
Professor Julius Klengel. After studying for three years, the 
young virtuoso, then seventeen, was invited to become Professor 
at the Koln Conservatory, as well as solo-'cellist of the Gurzenich 
Symphony Concert and member of the Gtirzenich Quartet, in which 
posts he remained until 1923. Feuermann now devotes himself to 
concert and chamber music work exclusively. 

He has played under such conductors as : Bruno Walter, Furt- 
wìinger, Nikisch, Weingartner, Klemperer, Busch, Abenclroth, 
Piernè, and many others. During the past two seasons he also 
played in Moscow and Leningrad, where he had an enormous suc- 
cess. The Istvestia wrote (on March 6, 1925) : "Emanuel Feuer- 
mann is a great artist. His technique is remarkable and his tone 
is beautiful." On October 22, 1925, the newspaper Het Vater- 
land (Der Haag, Holland) wrote: "Feuermann, who belongs to the 
Casals class, is without doubt one of the greatest 'cellists we have." 

Feuermann is an excellent musician and grand virtuoso. He 
has fìre and bravura, a brilliant technique, and a scintillant style, 
an acute sense of dramatic confrontation. 

Today he is acknowledged to be one of the greatest living 
interpretive artists. And for the great breadth of his powers 
he fìnds the 'cello the most satisfactory medium. 

Emanuel's brother, Sigmund Feuermann, is a very talented 
violinist and musician of note. 


Eduard Jacobs, eminent Belgian 'cello virtuoso was born in Hal, 
Belgium, in 1851. He studied under Servais, at the Brussels Con- 
servatory, and later went to Germany, where he became a mem- 
ber of the Weimar Court Orchestra. Upon his return to Belgium, 
he became professor at the Brussels Conservatory. 

Jacobs made many tours as virtuoso through Europe and was 
particularly popular in Russia. He belonged to the old school of 
'cello virtuosity and was one of the favorite 'cello performers of 
his day. 

'Cellists 273 


For centuries the violin has been considered supreme among 
string instruments. Violinists alone, of all string players, have 
been able to attain the popularity of singers or pianists, by virtue 
of technical possibilities of their instru- 
ment ancl the appealing quality of its 
tone. But in the last few years a 'cellist 
has come to the fore, whose accomplish- 
ments have gone far toward changing 
traditional beliefs. Her name is Raya 

She sings so tenderly that she melts 
the heart of you; sings like an angel, 
either damned or celestial. There is 
something diabolic in her energy of at- 
tack, an attack like the slash of a sabre. 
What temperament ! What surety ! What 
purity of intention! Technically she per- 
ilously approaches perfectionl 
Raya Garbousova was born on September 25, 1908, in Tiflis, 
Russian Caucasia. Her f ather, Boris, is a cornet player who is 
also a teacher at the Conservatory and a member of the symphony. 

At the age of seven, she started piano lessons, with her sister 
Lydia. A year later, she took her first 'cello lesson with Constantin 
Miniar, at the Tiflis Conservatory, from which she was graduated 
in 1923. She made such an impression with her playing, that the 
principals of the conservatory arranged a stipend for her, which 
enabled her to continue her studies in Moscow. 

Her first appearance was made at the age of nine. Since then, 
she has appeared under Conductor Suck, in Moscow ; under Paray, 
Wolf and Arbos, in Paris; under Peres Casses in Madrid; under 
Sir Henry Wood and Albert Coates in London. 

Critics have been unanimous in praise of Garbousova. When 
the f amous 'cellist Casals heard her in Paris, he prophesied a great 
future for her. At her last appearance in London, the critic of the 
Westminster Gazette wrote: "Her success was indeed nothing 
short of sensational." Glazounoff thus described her in the Lenin- 
grad Krasnaja Gazeta: "Her cantilena reminds one of singing 
and possesses a surprising variety of tone qualities. Everything 
in this young artist is extraordinary and she is herself a wonder 
of nature." 

Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 


Jean Gerardy noted Belgian 'cellist, was born on the seventh 
of December, 1877, at Liège, where his father, Dieudonne Gerardy 
was a piano teacher at the municipal conservatory. At the age 
of seven his studies were begun under 
Richard Boellmann. In less than two 
years he had won the second prize at the 
conservatory. In 1889, he was awarded 
the gold medal by unanimous consent of 
the jury. When ten years of age, he ap- 
peared in public for the fìrst time. The 
following year, when he played at Lille 
and Aix-la-Chapelle, newspaper critics 
hailed him as "an apparition destined to 
revolutionize the musical world." Each 
subsequent appearance s e r ve d t o 
strengthen this prediction. Eugene 
Ysaye, who heard the boy during the 
i . , , . Summer of 1888, was so greatly im- 

pressed that he caused London appearances to be arranged where 
Gerardy appeared jointly with Ysaye and Paderewski. Since then 
his successes have been continuous and phenomenal 

When he enlisted as a private soldier in 1914, it was his desire 
itv ?^J meC ° mì lf'^ f^ f . te ^ successf ully concealing his iden- 
tity foi three years, the Belgian Queen fìnally discovered him, and 
summoned him to appear at a Red Cross Benefìt Concert in Lon- 
don at the Royal Albert Hall. At that concert the King and Queen 
of England, the Queen Mother, and the King and Queen of Be - 
gium were present. As Gerardy says: »l n poker parlance, we had 
a full house'— two kings and three queens." 

Thereafter, until the armistice was signed, Gerardy, at his 
Queen s request, gave concerts at the "front" playing in all to 

nWovt f 1 - 6 °i 0( ] 0 S °] dÌe1 ^ Whe " Gera1 ^ madeWs^last tour 
pnor to his enhstment in the Belgian Army, he was generally rec- 
ognized as having reached the pinnacle of perfection 

Artistically Gerardy is fascinating. He embodies every qual- 
ity for completely conquering his audiences. 

The very manner in which he approaches his audience shows 
mastery and self-confìdence. His listeners are captivated by Ts 
magnetic personality before he has drawn a single tone on h!s 

rnnwf rardy for several se ^^ns in the United States, 

makmg a great stir m music-loving circles. 




Grunpeld is considerecl one of the most extraordinary 'cellists of 
the past generation. By his playing as soloist, and particularly in 
chamber ensemble, he established in Germany Bohemia's fame as 
a land of musicians par excellence. He 
was born on April 21, 1855 in Prague, 
and was a pupil under Hegenberdt at the 
local conservatory. At eighteen, he was 
soloist at the Vienna Opera. In 1876 
Grtinfeld.moved to Berlin and was most 
popular as a teacher at the Kulak Musik 
Akademie, where he taught for eight 
years. He also toured with his brother, 
Alfred, the pianist, through Germany, 
Austria, and other countries. 

In league with Xaver Scharwenka 
he organized in Berlin chamber trio con- 
certs, which had great artistic success. 
This noble and gifted artist, the idol of 
Berlin society, was high in favor with the German Emperor, 
princes and counts, who covered him with medals and other tokens 
of favor. He also received the title of "soloist of the Prussian 
Court." He had an acquaintance and friendship wìth such colossi 
as Hans von Biilow, Johannes Brahms, A. Rubinstein, I. Joachim, 
I. Strauss, Sarasate, D'Albert, Scharwenka, M. Sembrich, Sophia 
Menter, Adeline Patti, Zuderman, Fulder, Lindau, Bodenstedt, 
Spielhagen, Sonnenthal, Rodenberg, Lenbach, Edouard Hanslick, 
and many other celebrities. 

Grùnfeld has other ambitions than success on the concert stage. 
Amid all his broad activities as a concert artist, organizer, teacher, 
and ever-welcome friend in all of Berlin's music circles, Grunfeld 
preserved the one treasure which most musicians sacrifìce to their 
success — healthy nerves, sparkling humor, and cheerfulness. 

Famous Musicians of a Wanclerinq Race 


?nd TnthpWn 2 ' i 11 Yoron ^ Russia > a » d is th e Bon of Michael 
and Catherme Hambourg. His first teacher was his father, who 
vvas director of the Imperial Music School 
m Voronetz. Later, Boris studied 'cello 
with Herbert Wallen and Hugo Becker, 
and harmony with Professor Ivan 
Knorr, at Dr. Hoch's Conservatory in 
Frankfort. Later he studied in Paris 
and Brussels. 

Hambourg made his dèbut at the 
Tschaikowsky Festival in Pyrmont, Ger- 
many (1903), and later appeared in 
Aeolian Hall, London (November, 1904), 
and with the Philharmonic Orchestra in 
Berlin (1906). He also toured Austra- 
ha and New Zealand in 1903. At Aeo- 
lian Iiall, London, he gave five historical 
rT recitals on the 'cello (1906). 

Hambourg made his American dèbut in 1910 In Toronto 
Canada, together with his father and brother Jan," he established 
the Conservatory of Music, but abandoned the enterprise after his 
father's death in 1916. Later he settled in New York 

Boris Hambourg is also a talented composer, having published 
among others, the following works : ' 
"Perles Classiques," for 'cello and piano, arrangements from 
origmal editions for 'cello and figured bass; several songs and 'cello 
pieces, mcludmg six preludes and si'x Russian dances 

n.i B T° rÌS ^ amb r lrg . ÌS the brother of Mark > the f *™™ Pianist, 
and Jan, the violmist. 1 ' 


The famous Belgian 'cellist and composer, Marix Loevensohn, 
to whom such contemporary composers as Flora Joutard, Henriette 
Bossman, Charles Granville Bantock, and many others, have dedi- 
cated their works, was born in Coutari, Belgium, on March 31, 
1880. He studied under Jacobs at the Brussels Conservatorv and 
on graduatmg in 1898, received the first prize 



The same year he macle his dèbut in London, then toured 
through England with Adelina Patti, Albani, and Katherine Good- 
son. Marix Loevensohn is one of the best chamber-music 'cellists, 
ancl one of the most learned musicians. He was successively mem- 
ber of the Quartets of Wilhelmy, Marsick, Ysaye, and Thomson. 
He appeared as soloist in every center of importance in Europe, 
and also toured as soloist with the Colonne Orchestra (1905), 
visiting all the South American countries. The following year he 
toured with Ysaye. 

He also organized the "Loevensohn Modern Chamber Music 
Series" in Berlin, in which city he remained until 1914, when 
he enlisted in the Belgian army. He was discharged in 1916, and 
became soloist of the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. In 
1920 he was appointed fìrst professor of 'cello at the Brussels Royal 
Conservatory. At present he is holding two similar positions at 
Amsterdam and Brussels. He is also a member of the Amsterdam 
String Quartet. 

Loevensohn has written many works f or the 'cello ; many songs 
(in manuscript), and a brochure, called Chamber Music of Bel- 
f/ian Masters. 


Joseph Malkin, Russian 'cellist, was born in Odessa, Russia, on 
September 25, 1879. When still a very young boy, he received his 
musical instruction on the violin. Two years later, however, he 
adopted the 'cello, studying at the Conservatory under Aloise, 
Later he went to Paris, where he entered the Conservatory, and 
studied under H. Rabaud. In 1898 he received the fìrst prize. 
The same year he toured the Scandinavian countries with his broth- 
er Jacques, the violinist, and repeated this tour for three successive 
years. In 1902 he was accepted as 'cellist with the Berlin Phil- 
harmonic Orchestra, remaining with them for six years. He 
played under Nikisch, Mahler, Weingartner, Mottl, Strauss, Sibe- 
lius, and others. In 1908 he left the Philharmonic to join the 

Brussels Quartet, and a year later toured as soloist throughout 
Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, Russia, and England. 

In 1914, because of his friendship with the famous Moltke, 
who had presented him with an excellent Ruggieri, Malkin was 
allowed to leave Germany for the United States, where he joined 
the Boston Symphony forces as first 'cellist. He remained in that 
capacity for fìve years. Later he served three years with the 
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and afterwards concertized for two 
years with Geralcline Farrar, the famous American soprano, giv- 

Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ing concerts in the United States, Cuba, and Canada. Malkin has 
also concertized jointly with Melba, Emmy Destinn, Amato and 
other celebrated artists. 

During the seasons of 1925-26-27, Malkin was flrst 'cellist with 
the New York Symphony Orchestra, under Walter Damrosch. 


Isaac Mossel, the teacher of nearly all present-day famous Dutch 
celhsts, was born in Rotterdam, Holland, on April 22, 1870 When 
three years old he started to study the violin, but soon forsook it 
lor the cello. In 1885 he was a member of the Philharmonic Or- 
chestra of Berlin, and from 1888 to 1904 soloist of the Concert- 
gebouw in Amsterdam. 

He began his long career as teacher by accepting a post at the 
Amsterdam Conservatory in 1890, from which institution he grad- 
uated his numerous famous pupils. 

Isaac Mossel, who was the older brother of Max Mossel the 
famous violinist, died in December of 1923. 


Michael Peniia, eminent Dutch 'cellist, whose playing is of that 
grand style," was born in Amsterdanrin 1888. He was a student 
at the Amstercìam Conservatory, under Isaac Mossel, and later of 
H. Becker and Salmon. 

Penha appeared in Amsterdam in 
1907 and then toured Europe, South and 
Central America. In 1916 he settled in 
the United States, making occasional 
trips to Canada. He was leading 'cellist 
with the Philadelphia Symphony under 
Stokowski, and now occupies the same 
post with the San Francisco Symphony 
Orchestra under Alfred Hertz. 

His playing is marked by the fin- 
ished virtuosity of a master. Wherever 
he appears in chamber music or as solo- 
ist, he has been accorded an enthusiastic 




Gregor Piatigorsky, the 'cellist, ranks with that small galaxy of 
stars who look down from the heavens of the musical profession. 
He has been called the Russian Casals, and the Kreisler of the 'cello. 

Superlatives come readily to the pen 
of the critìc reviewing his art. A daz- 
zling technique, a warm rich tone that 
glows with color, a poetic insight and 
infinite variety of expression are out- 
standing characteristics of his art. Added 
to his superb musical equipment is a per- 
sonality of rare charm which captivates 
his audiences before he plays a single 

As in the case of so many musicians 
who have achieved distinction, Piati- 
gorsky comes of a musical family. His 
f ather, Paul, was an accomplished violin- 
ist, and taught Gregory when the latter 
was seven years old. Before the lad was nine, he was playing the 
concertos of Saint-Saèns and Davidoff. At fìfteen he was solo- 
'cellist of the Moscow Royal Opera. 

From 1916 to 1919 he studied 'cello with von Glen at the Mos- 
cow Conservatory, from which he graduated with the Grand Prix. 
Later he studied in Berlin with Hugo Becker, ancì in Leipzig from 
1920 to 1922. He toured Poland and Germany in 1921, 
and has appeared with most of the European orchestras under the 
direction of such distinguished conductors as Furtwangler, Klem- 
perer, Bruno Walter, Muck, Monteux, Clemens Craus, and others. 
Since 1924 he has been first 'cellist at the Berlin Philharmonie. 

The story is told that during a premiere of Richard Straus's 
"Don Quixote," the famous composer brought with him a special 
'cellist. The orchestra protested that their own first 'cellist be 
used. Straus, with an understandable respect for the difficulties 
of this work, agreed to dispense with his own 'cellist, if the other 
musician could play the score by sight. Piatigorsky accomplished 
the feat, and had his talents brought to the foref ront as a result. 

280 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 


2ìlTZ^ Zul d BUffered one of its * reatest recent Iosses whe » 

Joseph 1 less, still a young man, died on October 4, 1925, after his 
return to Amenca with a newly purchased splendid' Ruggieri 
'cello, from a successful tour in France 
and Western Europe. 

He returned to occupy his place as 
'cello instructor at the Eastman School 
of Music, in whose development he was 
actively interested, and to resume his 
other professional duties as fìrst 'cellist 
of the Rochester Symphony Orchestra 
and member of the Kilbourn Quartet. 
A few days after his arrival, he caught 
a severe cold and was removed to the 
hospital. He developed double-pneu- 
monia, and succumbed in a few days. 

This splendid musician and popular 
man was born in Vilna, Russia, on 
January 15, 1881. 
While still a yery young boy, he studied under Weinbreh and 
lileppel. Later he studied under von Glen at the Moscow Con- 
servatory from which he was graduatecì with the Golcì Medal This 
was ìmmediately followed by a career of concert playing ancl teach- 
ing, which continued imtil the World War. During that time he 
was chief of the 'cello department at the St. Petersburg Con- 
servatory. In 1920 he was offered a position on the faculty of the 
berhn Music Academy, but decided to come to America His 
cordial reception there influenced him to remain, and he shortlv 
Music me ^ member of the faculty of the Eastman School of 
In 1921 he made his American dèbut in New York, and was 
accepted at once by public and critics as a 'cellist of unusual merit 
A rare mterpretative ability and superior technical mastery of 
the cello evoked enthusiastic commendation from the New York 
writers and the musical press of the country. 

Shortly before the outbreak of the Worlcì War, Press with his 
brother Michael, and the latter's wife, Maurina Press (pianist) 
orgamzed the famous "Russian Trio," which won great renown 
in Kussia and abroad. These musicians often played for the ex 
Kaiser Wilhelm II and other royal persons in Europe. 

Joseph Press received many honors, among which were the 
gold Art ancì Science Medal of Germany. Not only as an artist, 



but as a man, Press was helcì in the highest esteem by all who 
knew him, beeause of his highly sympathetic disposition, nobility of 
mind, character and a staunch idealism that caused him, perhaps, 
much suffering in his career. The writer of this volume, who was 
associated with Press as a member of the Rochester Philharmonic, 
wìll never forget the rare friendship with his colleague. 


One op the greatest 'cellists of our time was undoubtedly David 
Popper, born in Prague, Bohemia on June 18, 1846. 

His playing was to the highest degree elegant and artistic, and 
his technical mastery perfect. Popper 
received his musical education at the 
Prague Conservatory. From 1863 he 
toured Europe, soon winning great fame 
as soloist. Not only was his technique 
perfect, and his tone large and noble, 
but his interpretations were ever musi- 
cal, intelligent, and moving. He was par- 
ticularly well received at Karlsruhe in 
1865 where he played at a Musical Festi- 
val, and in Vienna in 1867, where for 
several years he was soloist at the Vien- 
na Court Theatre. 

During many years Popper was pro- 
fessor at the National Academy in Bud- 
apest, from which city he started his concert tours over Europe, 
meeting everywhere with great enthusiasm. 

In cooperation with Jeno Hubay he established the famous 
"Hubay-Popper String Quartet," which won great success. 

In 1872 Popper married the pianist, Sofìa Menter, daughter of 
another famous 'cellist of his day. With her he made many con- 
cert tours over Germany, France, Russia, and other countries. 

Aside from his activities as soloist and executive, he enriched 
'cello literature by writing many beautiful and charming composi- 
tions, mainly of the salon genre. These include: two concertos (E 
minor and G major), two suites, Requiem for three 'cellos, fìve 
Spanish Dances, the famous "Gavotte" in D, "Papillon," "Spinning 
Song," "Elf-Dance," and many other beautif ul works, both original, 
transcriptions and arrangements. 

A characteristic of his work is the brilliant and effective ac- 
companiments which, it is said, he owes to his wife. 
This great 'cellist died in Baden, Austria, in 1913. 

282 Famoas Musicians of a Wandeving Race 


Joachim Stutschewsky, the well-known Russian 'cellist, was 
born on February 7, 1891, in Romny (near Poltava), Russia He 
comes of a musical family; his father and grandfather were pro- 
fessional musicians. 

He began to play the violin at the 
age of five, but it was a year later before 
he received regular lessons. At twelve, 
he expressed the wish to change to 'cello. 
It happened, however, that the town of 
Cherson, where the Stutschewsky fam- 
ily was residing, lacked a single 'cello 
teacher, and Joachim had to take his first 
lessons from a bass player. 

Shortly after, an accomplished 'cel- 
list, Kusnetzoff, came to the town, and 
taught the lad for several years. 

In October of 1909, he studied at the 
Leipzig Conservatory wìth Professor 
Julms Klengel ('cello), and Emil Paul (theory). Upon being 
graduated m 1912, he left for Zurich, where, till 1924, he was 
active as soloist, chamber music player, and pedagogue. He also 
toured m Germany, Holland and Austria. 

He came to Vienna in 1924 and with three renowned musicians 
organized the Wiener Streichquartett, which gave successful con- 
^t?^ 1 * 19 ' Fr T' Ce ' Germa »y> Italy, Spain and Switzerland. 

n^toS**™ 111 1927 10 devote himself to 

He is also a talented composer. Specially interesting are his 
Jewish compositions: "Mchol Kedem," "Dweikuth," aiTange^ 
men s of Eh, Eli," and other works. His "Studien zu einer neifen 
Spieltechnik auf dem Violincello," (exercises for the left arm i is 
technique terGStÌng ^ 1 *' * " eW meth ° d f ° r develo P in £ a high 

Stutschewsky has contributed articles in the Wiener Moraen- 
zeitung, Israelitisches Wochenblatt, Das Juclische Heìm Neue 
Zuricher Zeituncj, and Die Musik. He is now living in Vienna 




JACOB Sakom, the Russian 'cellist, was born in the little town of 
Ponieweje, Lithuania, on July 9, 1877. 

Although he started to take piano lessons at an early age, the 
lad was soon forced to abandon them, 
for his father, a lawyer, removed his 
family to another town, Shavly, and in- 
sisted that his son fìrst receive a general 
education. Jacob therefore entered the 
local high school, which boasted a stu- 
dent orchestra. At the age of fourteen, 
Jacob decided to take 'cello lessons with 
the leader of the orchestra. 

After being graduated from the high 
school, Sakom went to Kiev in order to 
enter the university, where he studied 
physics and mathematics. At the same 
time he entered the Royal Music School 
of the same city, studying 'cello with 
von Mulert. 

At twenty-four, Sakom was graduated both from the univer- 
sity, with a doctor's degree, and the Royal Music School, with a 
diploma and the fìrst prize. He then decided to become a profes- 
sional musician and lèft for Leipzig, where he studied 'cello with 
Professor Julius Klengel, and theory and composition with Ste- 
phan Krehl. 

He was graduated from the Leipzig Conservatory in 1905, re- 
ceiving fìrst prize for his wonderful and highly cultivated playing. 
He accepted an invitation of the Philharmony in Hamburg, as fìrst 
solo 'cellist. 

Sakom possesses a fìne noble tone, and is a musician par excel- 
lence. He is at present living in Hamburg, where, besides being 
the leading 'cellist with the Philharmony, he engages in pedagogy 
and is a chamber music executor. 

He has concertized through Germany, Sweden, and the Nether- 
lands, and is acclaimed an unusual 'cellist. He was a member of 
the "Fidelman Quartet" and the "Quast Trio." 


The NAME of Jacques van Lier, the Dutch 'cellist, is well known 
among 'cellists and musicians at large. He is considered as one 
of the foremost interpretors on his instrument. Both as soloist 

284 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

and chamber-music performer, he occupies a place of high rank. 

Jacques van Lier was born in the Hague on April 24, 1875. He 
studied 'cello with Hortog, Joseph Griese at the Hague, and with 
Eberle, in Rotterdam. He was fìrst 'cellist in Basle from 1891 to 
1895, after which he made many tours, and fìnally established him- 
self in Berlin as member of the Philharmonic Orchestra. From 
1897 till 1899 he was teacher at the Klindvorth-Scharwenka Con- 
servatory, and also a member of the Dutch Trio, with Coenraad 
Boss and Joseph van-Ven. He is the author of "Violincello Bogen- 
technik," "Moderne Violincello Technick," and composer of many 
classical works for the 'cello. Of particular value and excellence 
is his 'cello transcription of the well-known Burmeister "Stiicke 
Alter Meister," originally written for the violin. He is at present 
in England, where he organized in 1910, the Hermann vanLier 


This phenomenal seventeen-year-old 'cellist proudly carries with 
her a formal introduction from an older colleague, the famous 
and unsurpassed 'cellist, Pablo Casals, which reads: 

London, Nov. 22, 1925. 
To Whom It May Concern: 

The violoneelliste Mila Wellerson pos- 
sesses the genius of her instrument. She 
was ready to play in public at ten years of 
age. Today she has been recognized as a 
great artist in the principal musical centers 
of Europe. Pablo Casals. 

Mila Wellerson was born in New 
York City of Russian parentage, March 
30, 1910. Her mother, Mera Skolnik, 
is a 'cellist, and her father, Max Weller- 
son, a pianist. At the age of two and a 
half, Mila would hide in the room to- 
gether with her twin sister, Eugenia 
(violinist), waiting for her mother to 
leave the room after practicing on her 
'cello. The twins would then fìght for the privilege of playing on 
their mother's instrument. The winner would climb upon a chair 
to reach the fìngerboard of the 'cello and would then pick out by 
ear the melodies which she had heard her mother play. Perhaps 
it was Mila's physical superiority and special desire for the 'cello 
in those early battles of ambition that turned her thoughts towards 
becoming a 'cellist. On her third birthday she was asked if she 



wanted a sled, a doll, or other things of the kind. She answered that 
she wanted only a little 'cello. But no 'cellos could be found small 
enough for her diminutive hands. So by taking a large viola and 
inserting a peg on the bottom, her mother manufactured a service- 
able "baby cello" on which Mila at once began to play, uncler her 
mother's guidance. At the age of four, Mila could play sonatas 
by Romberg, Corelli and others. At the age of six, she played 
as 'cello soloist with the Young Men's Symphony Orchestra under 
Arnold Volpe, performing the A minor Goltermann concerto. 
At the age of nine, she gave several recitals at Carnegie Hall, 
New York, playing the most difficult compositions with such ease 
and understanding that old musicians and the press proclaimed 
her a great genius and a finished master of her instrument. At 
ten, she was engaged as soloist with the Cincinnati Orchestra un- 
der Eugene Ysaye. The critics as well as the audience went into 
raptures over her playing, and Ysaye also paid tribute to her. 
The same year she went to Paris, where she took a competitive 
examination in the Conservatoire. Some of the judges advised 
her she woulcl be wasting time by studying, since she knew before- 
hand more than those who had been graduated with highest hon- 

Immediately afterwards, she was engaged as soloist with the 
Colonne Symphony in Paris, under the direction of Gabriel Piernè. 
After giving several recitals, she came to Germany, playing with 
principal symphony orchestras as soloist. She gave many con- 
certs and the critics proclaimed her the greatest artist on the in- 
strument of her times. 

Mila, has transcribed Paganini's "Violin Concerto for the 
'Cello," and has composed a number of pieces which she plays at 
her concerts. 



The very talentecl pianist and accompanist, Isidor Achron, is 
a brother of Joseph Achron, the famous violinist and composer. 
Isidor was born on November 11, 1892, in Warsaw. As he showed 
a decided musical learning in eaiiy childhood, his older brother 
placed him in the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he studied 
fìrst under M. Vilaschevski and Mme Ersipov, and was graduated 
from the classes of Doubassov (1918). There he also studied 
theory, fìrst with his brother and later under Liadov. 

Isidor Achron concertized widely in Russia and Germany, 
and appeared as soloist with a large symphony orchestra in Pav- 
lovsk, near St. Petersburg. In Beiiin he gave four concerts in the 
course of one season. He came to the United States in 1922, 
where he made his dèbut in a concert at Carnegie Hall, New York. 
Later he was engaged by Jascha Heifetz as his permanent ac- 


Clarence Adler, pianist and pedagogue, was born in Cincinnati, 
Ohio, on March 10, 1886. He obtained his eaiiy musical training 
at the Cincinnati College of Music under Romeo and Albino Gorno. 
Later he studied in Berlin with Godowsky and Jose da Motta ; with 
Alfred Reisenauer in Leipzig; and with Raphael Joseffy in New 
York. His European dèbut took place in Beiiin in 1907, after 
which he was engaged to succeed Arthur Schnabel as pianist of 
the Hekking Trio, which toured the Continent. He returned to 
America in 1909 and established himself in Cincinnati where, 
together with Hugo Heermann (violinist) and Julius Sturm ('cell- 
ist) , he organized a trio. 

He also was active there as teacher until 1912, when he was 
induced by Joseffy to come to New York. His first appearances in 
New York were with the Kneisel Quartet and with the New York 
Symphony in 1913. The same year he was engaged as member 
of the faculty of the Institute of Musical Art. In 1919 he appeared 
on numerous occasions with Kneisel and the Letz Quartet. Later, 
Adler organized the New York trio with Cornelius van-Vliet 
(cellist), and Scipione Guido (violinist). 


290 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Gregory Ashman was born in Kiev, in 1899. His parents were 
Sophia (Belopolsky) and Naum Ashman. 

At the age of thirteen, Gregory resisted his father's objections, 
and secretly practiced the piano when no one was at home, play- 
ing with each hand separately all the music which he could fìnd 
in the house. 

About a year later, Gregory startled his family at the dinner 
table by announcing that he had been accepted by the Russian 
Imperial Conservatory, as a scholarship pupil under Professor V. 
Puchalsky. The family who had s'hown such little sympathy for 
his musical inclinations could hardly believe such a statement, es- 
pecially since no pupil was accepted in the conservatory without 
preliminary training. 

Gregory Ashman continued to make great strides in his music, 
and at the end of the second year, was appointed to the position 
of official accompanist to all the soloists who were invited by the 
Imperial Musical Society to appear in Kiev. 

Such remarkable progress was mterrupted by the Revolution. 
Gregory was mobilized and a musical career had to be abandoned 
for a while. Later, when freed from military service because of 
his health, he was given permission to leave Russia. After travel- 
ing through many countries, including Turkey and Greece, where 
he supported himself through his music, Ashman arrived in the 
United States at twenty-two. 

Here he was glad to meet again Paul Kochanski and Josef 
Press, both of whom he had accompanied in Russia. Just when 
he was about to settle in the new country he received an offer 
from Zimbalist to tour the Orient with him. Again he was a 
traveler, and when the tour was ended, instead of coming back 
to the United States, he decided to go to Java. He lived there for 
a year and half and returned to the United States to continue his 
musical career. 


Emanuel Bay, the son of a cantor in Lodz, Poland was born in 
that city on January 7, 1891. At the age of ten, he'began taking 
piano lessons under Strobel at the Lodz Music School. (Strobel 
was at one time the director of the Warsaw Conservatory.) After 
being graduated from the local school in 1909, Bay went to St 
Petersburg, entering the Conservatory and studying there under 
Drozdov. He completed the course in 1913, playing the Tschaikow- 



sky concerto, and receiving a grancl-piano as a prize. Since then 
Bay has appeared as soloist under Coates, Koussevitzky, Malko, 
Tcherepnin, Glen, Aslanoff, and other famous conductors. 

Bay is one of the best of contemporary pianists and accom- 
panists, being accompanist for Kochanski, Press (the 'cellist), 
Heifetz, the Meckelburg quartet, and others. 

For the past few seasons he has been the accompanist of Zim- 


Harold Bauer is one of the greatest pianists of our time. He was 
bornjn New Malden, near London, on April 28, 1873. His father 
was of German origin (an excellent amateur violinist), while his 
mother was English. 

Born of a musical family, he began 
studying the violin at the age of six, 
with Pulitzer. At ten he appeared in 

A few years later, the young Bauer 
met Graham Moore, a serious and ac- 
complished musician, who taught him 
the piano. In the meanwhile he had no 
thought of giving up his studies on the 
violin. After his dèbut in London, he 
played much in public. At twenty, he 
went to Paris expecting the musical 
world to bow before him. He had very 
little money, but was determined to stay 
there indefinitely, for he loved the glamorous city. He found that 
engagements as a violinist were not easy to get, but that piano 
accompanying was apt to be more marketable. Bauer decided to 
use his knowledge of the instrument and, after a few weeks prac- 
tice, succeeded in securing several engagements. His first chance 
came very soon. He was asked to substitute for another maii who 
was to accompany Paderewski on a second piano. "At that time," 
says Bauer, "I knew about enough to be able to play the essential 
notes in a difficult passage— those that could not be spared !" Pad- 
erewski was evidently impressed, for he gave him helpful hints 
from time to time, and got him a job. 

This job consisted of playing sonatas for violin and piano 
twice a week with an old Polish aristocrat who had escaped from 
Poland during the insurrection and had managed to retain a con- 
siderable part of his fortune. 

During that period other engagements were coming and Bauer 

292 Famons Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

had no time to develop the careful technique that takes many years 
to perfect. He was a born musician; the violin had taught him 
to listen attentively to the tone, and he hacl to rely on his musical 
knowledge and ability for the rest. There was no time for perfec- 
tion, so instead he strove to discover the essential meaning of the 
thing he was studying, and then to produce an effect that would 
bring out this meaning. 

When he was offered an engagement to tour with a singer in 
Russia as her accompanist, he could not refuse the chance. Then 
he went to Constantinople, where he had to wait for money from 
Paris, for he had been robbed en route. In Constantinople he 
played a solo concert which was apparently a great success, for, 
on his return to Paris, engagements multiplied. From that time 
on his career as a pianist was an established fact. Circumstances 
had made him one of the greatest piano virtuosi of the world, a 
musician whose name is well known all over the civilized globe 
today. For Bauer is a real cosmopolite; he has played in Spain, 
Italy, France, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Holland, the Scan- 
dinavian countries, Russia, England, Australia, Honolulu, Turkey, 
and in every town of the United States; his audiences have con 
sisted of every class from the most sophisticated and cultured to a 
hall full of red Indians. 

Bauer has played in America for twelve successive seasons. 
Until quite recently his permanent home was in Paris, but he has 
since moved to New York, making that city the centre of his 
numerous American engagements. 

In 1919 Bauer founded the Beethoven Association of New 
York. Many of the foremost artists give their services gratuit- 
ously to these concerts ; the idea being simply that these renowned 
virtuosi should have an opportunity to play together those beautiful 
pieces of chamber music that are seldom heard. 

Six successful concerts have been given annually by the Beetho- 
ven Association for the past eight years in New York under the 
inspiration of Bauer. The public would readily support twice 
as many. 

Among the players are such names as Casals, Heifetz, Ysaye, 
Godowsky, Elman, Kochanski, Damrosch, Thibaud, Kreisler, Ga- 
brilowitsch, McCormack, Matzenauer, Lhevinne, Flesh, Samaroff, 
Kneisel, Stokowski, and of course Bauer. 

The result of assembling so many noteworthy artists, with no 
other purpose than that of rendering beautif ul music, should be to 
stimulate such artistic co-operation all over the United States. 

It has established a precedent for co-operation, self-effacement, 
and the subordination of personal interests to the greater glory 
of art. This principle is* upheld by the great triumvirate — Bauer, 
Casales, and Thibaud. 



Today Bauer is regarclecl as one of the most perfectly equipped 
pianists in the world. His talent thrived on this method and he 
advocates something very much like it for others. "The fìrst thing 
for a student to learn," he says, "is rhythm and self-expression. 
He should dance and sing before he ever touches an instrument. 
He shoulcl learn to express himself through gestures and voice. 
Singing is a vast help in learning correct phrasing. The child will 
learn that the true phrase should last as long as the breath required 
for its delivery. I would never start a child's actual lessons with 
scales. I woulcl give him something that would interest him im- 
mediately. There are plenty of good pieces simple enough for 
beginners. If he likes the piece that he is playing, he will want 
to remedy his weakness to obtain the effects. His imagination 
will become alert. Under my system scales would be abolished 
until the student wanted to play them." 

Harold Bauer was an intimate friend of the late Debussy, the 
two artists holding each other in high esteem. There was only 
one point of disagreement between them. Debussy contended that 
his compositipns were among the most difficult of the moderns, 
while Bauer disproved this again and again by reading his works 
at sight, and exactly as they were meant to be played. 

One day Debussy greeted Bauer with a shout of delight. "I 
can write you a chord that even you will not be able to play at 
sight!" he cried. "Go ahead!" Bauer challenged. The chord was 
written. It was composed of three notes — the highest note on the 
piano, the lowest, and another in the midcìle of the board. Bauer 
promptly played the bottom and top notes with his ha_nds and the 
micldle one with his nose. 

Great honors were paid Bauer in Europe. As soloist with the 
leading orchestras of England, France, and Holland, and in re- 
cital in the leading cities of that continent, he achieved great per- 
sonal success. He was gratifìed to find a large public to welcome 
him after his absence of nine years in America. Among his most 
interesting recent appearances was his participation at the Salz- 
burg (Austria) Festival for modern chamber music compositions. 
While in that city Bauer also officiated at the formal ceremonies 
of laying the cornerstone for the new opera house, attending this 
function as president of the Beethoven Association of New York 
City. In conclusion, we may add that thanks to Harold Bauer, 
the profìts of the Beethoven Association concerts are devoted to 
the publishing of the original English version of Arthur Wheelock 
Thayer's authoritative life of Beethoven, hitherto available only in 
its German translation. The society has also contributed mater- 
ially to the establishment in the New York Public Library of a 
valuable collection of works by Beethoven ancl books about the 
great composer, and has made a substantial contribution towards 
the erection of a new Festspielhaus in Salzburg. 

294 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


The eminent pianist, Fanny Bloomfield-Zeisler, was born in Belitz, 
Austria Silesia, on July 16, 1863. She was the daughter of Solomon 
and Bertha (nèe Yaeger), and was brought to Chicago when she 
was three years old. In time she be- 
came one of America's most successful 
artists. Her teachers in Chicago were 
Bernhard Ziehn and Carl Wolfsohn, with 
whom she studied from 1878 to 1883. At 
the age of ten, Fanny made a prpfound 
impression at a public concert in Chicago 
and two years later met the famous Mme. 
Essipova, who advised the girl to go to 
Leschetizky. She accordingly went to 
Vienna and studied under the famous 
pedagogue for fìve years. 

Beginning with 1883, and for nearly 
ten years more, Bloomfìeld-Zeisler con- 
certized in every large and small center 
of the new continent, establishing for herself a reputation as a 
pianist of unusual prowess, commanding very enthusiastic audi- 

Mme Bloomfield-Zeisler studied harmony and composition with 
Gardener and Navaratil. Her dèbut was made in February of 1875, 
when she appeared with the Beethoven Society in Chicago. Her 
first important New York appearance was at Steinway Hall under 
van-der-Stucken, in January of 1885. Bloomfield-Zeisler appeared 
with all the leading orchestras of both continents, under such con- 
ductors as Richard Strauss, Nikisch, Mahler, Seidel, Thomas, 
Chevillard, Svendsen, MacKenzie, Ermannsdorfer, Stock, Rotten- 
berg, Hellmesberger, Damrosch, Gerricke, Stokowski, Pauer, Her- 
bert, Oberhoffer, and many others. From 1893 until 1912 with oc- 
casional interruptions, she concertized in Germany, Austria, 
France, England and elsewhere, meeting in those countries with 
even greater recognition than at home. Her emotional force, her 
personal magnetism and her keen process of analysis compelled 
critics everywhere to rank her with the foremost pianists of the 

Bloomfìeld-Zeisler contributed articles on music to magazines 
and lectured on music before leading clubs. On October 18, 1885, 
she married Sigmund Zeisler. She was a cousin of Moritz Rosen- 
thal, the f amous pianist, and of Adolph Robinson, the baritone ; and 
sister of Professor Maurice Bloomfìeld, of the Johns Hopkins 



In speaking of Bloomfìeld-Zeisler's successes as an artist, she 
herself said: "The secret of success in the career of a virtuoso is 
not easily defìned. Many elements have to be considered. Given 
great natural talent, success is not by any means assured. Many 
seemingly extraneous qualities must be cultivated. . ." 

She died in Chicago on August 20, 1927 of a heart attack. 


A pianist of Jovian pattern is Alexander Borowsky, the llussian 
pianist. Like one of Turgenieff's heroes, "with a storm in the soul 
and a fìame in the blood," he invaded the western world of music, 
intrenched behind its critical bastions, 
and was victorious. 

Alexander Borowsky learned his fìrst 
scales in Enisseysk, a small outpost of 
civilization in Siberia, where his father 
held a government position. Here, the 
winter lasts eight months of the year, 
and the temperature freezes the unwary 
nose that ventures out too long. Alex- 
ander was born on March 19, 1889. The 
youthful Borowsky began his musical 
studies under his mother's devoted guid- 
ance. The piano was one regularly 
loaned to the family by the captain of the 
ship which put into port every year be- 
fore the ice season set in, and stayed until the ice broke up in the 
Spring. Thus Borowsky was taught early to make music while 
the piano lasted. 

From the fìrst his mother realized that her child had mar- 
vellous gifts. He mastered scales, double thirds, and octaves with- 
out any trouble, and asked for more. He was only seven when his 
mother overheard him playing a Chopin Scherzo which she her- 
self had been studying. When the family returned later to St. 
Petersburg, Alexander was sent to thè Conservatory of Music 
where he studied under Mme Essipova, and received honorary 
mention in the Anton Rubinstein competition. But his mother de- 
cided that he should not be exploited as a wonder-child, and so he 
was not allowed to give public concerts until he had fìnished his 
course at the Conservatory. He continued quietly at his musical 
studies throughout his University course, and received his degree 
in law before he made his bow as a professional musician to the 
public, The wisdom of this course was apparent to all who heard 

296 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

the young artist on the occasion of his dèbut. Like Minerva who 
sprang full-grown from the head of Jove, he appeared suddenly 
before the public a fìnished artist. His concerts were crowded 
wherever he played, even during the eaiiy Soviet règime when coal 
was scarce and the heating of concert hall a problem. 

After five years of concert work in Russia, Borowsky clecided 
he would like to see the woiid. He founcl, however, that it was 
not so easy for a Russian to leave his country, and it was only 
after countless visits to high officials that at last he received per- 
mission to cross the frontier. That was in 1921. After giving 
recitals in Poland and the Balkan countries, Borowsky arrived in 
Paris at the time of the Music Festival, which was under the di- 
rection of Koussevitzky. Here in two orchestral concerts con- 
ducted by the famous Russian, Borowsky made his bow to a 
French audience. His success was extraordinary, ancl one recital 
followed another. In the three seasons since his fìrst appearance 
he has appeared twenty-seven times in the French capital. In 
fact, throughout Europe and South America, Borowsky has ap- 
peared with marked success. In his five seasons before the west- 
ern public he has appeared in nearly 400 recitals or concerts. 

His American dèbut was made in two recitals in Carnegie 
Hall, in 1923, on which occasion he impressed all who heard him as 
a genuine artist. The following season (1924-25) he returned to 
America for a brief tour, owing to the fact that he was booked 
for a concert tour of twelve concerts in the Balkans, eight in Ger- 
many, twelve in Scandinavia, five in London and six in Paris. 
The next season he returned to America for the months of Janu- 
ary and February. 

Borowsky is also a favorite in Berlin, where his twelve recitals 
and his appearances as soloist with the Philharmonic created a 
furore. He is known as a colossus of the tonal woiid. The in- 
terest in his concerts is very great, and his large and representa- 
tive audiences have included Rachmaninoff, Godowski, Levitzki, 
Rubinstein, Nikisch, Siloti, Claudio Arrau, Elly Ney, Marcella 
Sembrich, Huberman, and many other important artists. 

The American press was particularly enthusiastic over Bor- 
owsky's performances. Lawrence Gillman of the New York Trib- 
une wrote: "Mr. Borowsky's rapid achievement of distinction is 
not surprising. He is a pianist of imposing technical equipment." 

Pitts Sanborn wrote: "Borowsky has a tremendous technique; 
he plays with crystalline clearness, with a sure command of dyna- 
mic gradations, with unlimited nerve and dash. But it is always 
scrupulously clean playing, even when he splashes the tonal can- 
vas with ochre and vermilion. His crescendo is one of the most 
thrilling things to be heard in our concert rooms these clays, and 
his diminuendo is as faultlessly controlled." 

Pianists 297 


IN contrast to his brother Henry, Joseph Wieniawski was a 
favorite of fortune. His marriage to the daughter of the famous 
composer, Julius Schulhoff, brought him not only happiness but 
wealth as well. Joseph Wieniawski was 
as considerable a pianist as his brother 
Henry was a violinist. He was his 

brother's junior by two years, having 
been born on May 23, 1837, in Lublin, 
Russia. He studied at the Paris Conser- 
vatory, where he won two medals. In 
1853 he came to Weimar, where Liszt 
became interested in him and accepted 
him as a pupil. Later he toured with his 
brother through Europe, meeting every- 
where with enthusiasm and fìnancial suc- 

To complete his musical studies, 
Joseph Wieniawski began studying the- 
ory under A. B. Marx in Berlin, from 1856 to 1860, when he went 
to Paris and met with much success, often playing for Napoleon 
III. At Ober's insistence he became teacher at the Paris Con- 
servatory, but left Paris for Moscow in 1865, where he was ap- 
pointed prof essor at the Conservatory. He soon established his 
own school of piano playing, which prospered greatly. In 1875 he 
organized a musical society in Warsaw, whose director he was until 
1876. He also was professor at the Brussels Conservatory for 
many years. 

Wieniawski also won recognition as a composer. He wrote a 
concerto for the piano, idyls, sonatas, tarantelles, waltzes, polo- 
naises, etudes, capricios, rondos, songs without words, impromp- 
tus, fantasias, fugues, cadenzas to Beethoven's C minor Concerto, 
and many other works. 

In his book My Long Life in Mnsic, Leopold Auer says the fol- 
lowing of his meeting with Joseph Wieniawski : 

"At a morning recital at the Salle Pleyel arrangecl for me by 
persons of influence in order to make it possible for me to continue 
my studies, I was assisted by the pianist, Joseph Wieniawski, the 
brother of Henry, the great violinist, whom at that time I knew 
only by name. I had met the pianist Wieniawski in Germany. 
He played a sonata at my recital, a decided honor for me, 
who was no more than a young student with hopes that lay all in 
the future, whereas Joseph Wieniawski, aside from the imposing 

298 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

relationship with his famous brother, was himself a personality. 
The day after my recital, in order to thank him for his kindness, 
I went to call at his rooms in the Hotel de Bade, which was at that 
time very popular with musicians. When I had explained the rea- 
son for my call, he received my thanks with dignity and a certain 
colcìness. Nevertheless I plucked up sufficient courage to ask him 
for his photo. The album containing a number of small photos 
were than at the height of their popularity, and every student then, 
just as he does today, yearned to add to his collection the auto- 
graphed photos of the artists most in the public eye. 

To possess an album of this kind had always been my greater 
desire ; so af ter my recital, when my f ather made me a present of 
one as a little secret, Joseph Wieniawski was the fìrst person to 
whom I turned for a pictorial contribution, because of our colla- 
boration. I timidly explained what I wished of him. This is 
what happened: 

"Wieniawski, stretched negligently on a lounge and employing 
the tone of a superior addressing his subordinate, asked, 'Have 
you a photo of Liszt?' I answered that, alas, I had none. 'Very 
well/ said he, 'have you a photo of Thalberg?' Once more I replied 
in the negative. . . . Thereupon Wieniawski, in a tone which min- 
glecì pride and regret, declared, 'Thèn I cannot give you my por- 
trait. . . .' 

"Many years later, when I was dining with Henry Wieniawski 
in a London restaurant, I told him the story of his brother Joseph 
and the portrait. Henry, looking very serious, told me, 'You should 
have said to him, "Sir, if I had the portraits of Liszt and Thalberg, 
I should not have done you the honor of asking for yours." ' " 




BUSONI'S father was an Italian Christian, but his mother (nèe 
Weiss), was of German-Jewish origin. It was she, this accom- 
plished pianist and earnest musician, who taught the gifted boy, 
who was afterwards to become one of 
musical history's greatest names. 

Busoni began as a pianist (perhaps 
the only great pianist who treated the in- 
strument purely objectively, with no 
imaginative illusions about its singing or 
even suggestive melodic powers). His 
playing of Bach, Liszt, Chopin, or Weber 
could only be compared to stone colon- 
nades coming to life. He was the most 
educative pianist in the world, for 
though there was everything to absorb 
in that gigantic style, there was nothing 
to imitate. 

As a composer, on the other hand, 
there was probably no one among his contemporaries concerning 
whom there was such diversity of enlightened opinion. While 
Stravinsky is reported to have said that he "would like to bring 
it about that music would be perf ormed in street cars, while people 
get in and out," Busoni regarded music as something which should 
be kept apart from daily life. "Music is the most aloof and secret 
of the arts. An atmosphere of solemnity and sanctity should sur- 
rouncl it. Admission to a musical performance should partake of 
the ceremonial and mystery of a freemason ritual." This was Bu- 
soni's attitude toward the highest, if no.t the most universally ap- 
pealing art. 

Leschetizki is known to have said some nasty things about 
Italian pianistic methods; but Busoni is the exception, that rara 
avis — a really great Italian pianist. He understood music as a 
musician, not merely as a pianist. 

In Busoni was a wonderful blend of the dazzling virtuoso, the 
serious musician, and the restless, romantic spirit. 

Ferruccio Benvenuto Busoni was born on April 1, 1866, in 
Empoli, near Florence, Italy. His father, Ferdinado Busoni, was 
a clarinettist, and his mother, Anna Weiss, was an excellent pianist, 
who appeared in public concerts with no less an artist than Sara- 
sate. Under her guidance the boy advanced very rapidly and at 
the age of seven made his fìrst public appearance in Trieste, play- 
ing a Mozart Concerto with orchestra, Two years later he ap- 

300 Famous Micsicians of a Wanclering Race 

peared in a public concert in Vienna. Not only by his playing, 
but by his gifts of improvisation he gained, even at that age, the 
enthusiastic praise of the famous critic, Eduard Hanslick. 

For some years af ter, Busoni was' a pupil of W. Mayer Remy 
in Graz, Austria, a Jewish pedagogue of considerable reputation, 
who was also the teacher of Kienzl and Weingartner. 

At sixteen, Busoni competed for the cìiploma given by the 
Academy of Bologna for a fugue on a given theme. He won it 
to the great astonishment of the savants of the academy, for not 
since Mozart had a youth of sixteen gained this distinction. As 
an additional reward, his Cantata for soli and orchestra, "II Sabato 
del Villaggio," was performed by the Bolognese Philharmonic Or- 

At eighteen, he went to Leipzig and studied composition ancl 
virtuosity. During his stay there, he came in contact with great 
musicians, such as Delius, Grieg, Mahler, and Tschaikowsky. 

In 1890, Busoni was appointed Professor at the Helsingfors 
(Finland) Conservatory. In that city he met and married Gerda 
Sjòrstrand, daughter of a famous sculptor. In that Scandinavian 
country Busoni for the fìrst time came in contact with the North- 
erners. This had an important influence on the course of his de- 
velopment. It was during the same year that he won the Rubin- 
stein Prize for his "Konzertsttick," opus 31, for piano and or- 
chestra, which he rounded off into a concertino in 1921 by aclding 
a charming Romanza and Scherzo. This was the fìrst occasion 
which caused him to be regarded as a person of importance. In 
Russia he met Rimsky-Korsakoff, Safonoff, and Glazounoff, with 
whom he became friends. 

After his first term at the Helsingfors Conservatory in 1891, 
Busoni made a visit to the United States, as professor of piano at 
the New England Conservatory. He returned to Europe two years 
later, making his home in Berlin, where he resided from time to 
time until his death. From that place he macìe frequent concert 
tours, and spent the season of 1907-1908 in Vienna, where he suc- 
ceeded Emil Sauer as teacher of the Meisterklasse at the Conser- 
vatory. From 1909 to 1911, he made highly successful tours to 
the United States, and in 1913 went to Bologna as director of the 
Liceo and conductor of the symphony concerts in that city. That 
same year he was decorated with the Cross of a Chevalier of the 
Legion d'Honneur, Rossini and Verdi being the only other Italians 
to have been so honored. 

In 1915 Busoni again came to America. Italy being blockaded 
on account of the war, Busoni spent the period from 1915 to 1919 
in Zurich, Switzerland, in a sort of voluntary exile, playing in 
none of the belligerent countries. Returning to Berlin in 1920, 
he was appointed director of the "Meisterklasse" for composition, 



a post whch he kept until his death (from heart attack) on July 
27, 1924. 

Ferruccio Busoni achieved fame in four phases of his profes- 
sion: as pianist, as pedagogue, as conductor, and as composer. 
As a pianist, Busoni was one of the world's greatest technicians 
since Liszt and Rubinstein. His mastery over his instrument was 
almost superhuman, yet he never sacrifìced music on the altar of 
display. His playing was imbued with extraordinary fìre, which 
he also imparted to some of his numerous pupils, many of whom 
are now among the world's foremost concert artists. There was 
an elevation, a spiritual force, an utter absence of materialism in 
his playing which rendered it unique. The astounding boldness 
and clearness of his polyphonic playing, the vehemence and ele- 
mentary force of the sweeping passages, the elegance of his orna- 
mental work, the elasticity and precison of his rhythms, his sur- 
prisingly new and admirable treatment of the pedal, created 
marvels of sound. The profundity which was the metaphysical 
background of his playing did not interfere with its musical quali- 

Busoni's compositions cover practically the entire fìeld of music 
from opera and symphony to incidental music. Probably his best 
known single work is his transcription for the piano of the Bach 
Chaconne. His best known opera is "Die Brautwahl." Between 
1890 and 1900 he did not compose, but slowly evolved those ideas 
which later found expression in his mature work. 

The art of his earlier period, which he later hardly consented 
to recognize, contains nevertheless many gems. This period is 
summed up in his monumental "Pianoforte Concerto," opus 34, 
outstanding in the grandeur of its construction and wealth of 
musical invention. 

Busoni was a violent opponent to realistic and Wagnerian ten- 
dencies in the field of dramatic music. He wrote all of his libret- 
tos, and occupied himself only with magical, mythical and fan- 
tastic subjects, realistic subject matter being, in his opinion, un- 
suitable for musical treatment. 

It was Busoni who brought the art of arranging to a perfec- 
tion surpassing even Liszt's work. His Bach studies fìll seven 
extensive volumes. 

This sincere and cultured man also found much time for writ- 
ing, and his essays, which have recently been collected under the 
title of Von der Einheit der Musik, are examples of limped style 
and earnestness, approaching that of Santayana. Of these essays, 
his Entiourf einer Neuen Aesthetic der Tonkunst (1907-1916), 
has been translated into Russian and English. 

His compositions of the later period may be roughly said to 
begin with opus 36«, which shows his peculiar mixture of southern 

302 Famous Musicians pf a Wandering Race 

temperament with the mysticism and fantasy of the north. Under 
this opus number is published his second "Violin Sonata." His 
"Violin Concerto," opus 35, in D major, has of late become some- 
what familiar through frequent performances by the young Hun- 
garian violinists, Szigeti and Telmany, especially, having played 
it often. 

Busoni has also written for the pianoforte — for two and four 
hands. To the latter class belong his famous "Fantasia Contra- 
puntistica," "Improvisations on a Bach Chorale," and a "Duetino 
Concertant," on themes from a Mozart concert. 

He has written two chamber music quartets, opus 19 and 26, 
twelve compositions for symphony orchestra, the earliest of which 
is his "Tone Poem," opus 32a, and the last, the famous "Tanz- 
walzer," opus 53; various songs, opus 1, 2, 15, 18, 24, 31, 32 and 
35 ; a "Concertino for Clarinet and Orchestra," opus 48 ; a "Diver- 
timento" for flute and orchestra; and cadenzas to concertos by 
Beethoven, Brahms, and Mozart, as well as numerous other works. 


Tiie most important musical discovery since Hofmann — such is 
the consensus of opinion of all who hear Shura Cherkassky, the 
sixteen-year-old boy pianist. New York heard him in November, 
1923, and again on March 14, 1924, as 
well in 1925, '26 and '27. But to Balti- 
more belongs the credit of his "discov- 
ery," or rather to Harold Randolph, di- 
rector of the Peabody Conservatory of 
Music, and Frederick R. Huber, muni- 
cipal director of music in Baltimore. 

When the little family -arrived in Bal- 
timore in 1923 from their home in 
Odessa, Russia, where privation and cold 
had made life unbearable, the boy, who 
was born in 1911 in Odessa, was taken by 
his uncle to the Conservatory, to have 
judgment passed on his playing. Deeply 
impressed, Mr, Randolph arranged for a 
private hearing before the chief critics of the city. About fourteen 
persons were present on that occasion. When Shura entered the 
room, they saw bef ore them a child of average height f or his eleven 
years, pale, with a shock of black hair shadowing a pair of rather 
sad eyes. He sat down at the piano. His stubby little boots barely 
touched the floor, so that he was obliged to sit on the extreme edge 



of the chair in order to reach the pedals. But his playing showed 
no trace of his physical immaturity. His small audience sat 

This awkward little boy with the sad eyes manifests in his 
music the intellectual grasp of a mature artist. His technique leaves 
the listener breathless, for before one's eyes, you see the little fel- 
low's fingers take octaves, arpeggios, scales with lightning speed. 
On this occasion he gave the Rachmaninoff Prelude in G, the 
Beethoven Sonata, opus 31, No. 2, Daquin's "Le Coucou," the 
"C sharp minor Etude," and "Fantaisie Impromptu" of Chopin, 
and a "Prelude Pathetique" which he himself had composed. Ran- 
dolph and Hubert kissed the boy for his wonderful playing. 

"It is terrifying!" a critic was heard to remark. Here was 
indeed the "find" of the age. A recital was arranged forthwith 
at the Lyric Theatre, and here Shura made his American dèbut 
on March 3, 1923. Two other sold-out recitals followed, in which 
he was heard in entirely different programs. At that time the 
eleven-year old boy had a repertoire of two hundred pieces, in- 
cluding such works as the Liszt, Grieg, and Chopin concertos. In 
fact, he played the Chopin F minor with the Baltimore Symphony 
in October, 1924. 

But technique is more or less a physical attribute; it is the 
spiritual quality in the playing of Shura that shows him to be a 
genius without equal in recent years. 

When Paderewski heard Shura play, he was delighted with his 
gifts and personality. He declared that Shura must continue the 
same course that had developed his talents. "Two concerts a 
month — no more. A sound general and cultural education with 
special attention to the languages. The rest will take care of 
itself, and his needs will be met as they arise." This last phrase 
was the one that pleased Shura the most. For he does not want 
especially to be this vague and mysterious creature that men call 
a "genius." His ambition is to be a regular boy and to master 
the intricacies of base-ball. 

Rachmaninofl: also heard him and was impressed by his re- 
markable gifts, as were also Godowsky and De Pachman. The late 
Victor Herbert after hearing the boy, exclaimed, "He is a genius, 
that is all there is to it! He is marvelous — that is the word." 

As one reads the various criticisms in the newspapers, criticisms 
from various cities where Shura has played, he meets more than 
once the remark that it was impossible to listen to the boy's play- 
ing with dry eyes. Strange indeed is the effect of the playing of 
this "wonder child." What some pianists spend a life-time in 
acquiring, this boy possesses without effort — rhythmic understand- 
ing, a beautiful singing tone, a technical mastery that is uncanny. 
So incomprehensible is the mystery that it stirs the very depths of 
one's emotions. 

304 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

After his recital in New York on March 13, 1925, one periodical 
said: "On this occasion the young artist not only drew a dis- 
tinguished audience but also received the warm favor of the critics, 
the World saying in part: 'With careful nurturing, preferably in 
some musical hothouse, Shura Cherkassky might be in a few years 
the piano genius of a generation.' " 

Shura has found the "hot-house" the critic recommends in the 
Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he was awarded 
a scholarship in 1924, and where he is a pupil and special favorite 
of the great pianist, Joseph Hofmann. Young Shura is very proud 
of having in his possession an autographed picture from the late 
President Harding and his wife, which he received after playing 
at the White House. 


One of the pre-eminent piano-accompanists and music critics is 
Samuel Chotzinoff, who was born in Vitebsk, Russia, on July 4, 
1889. His father was a rabbi and teacher of Yiddish. The family 
emigrated to the United States in 1906. 
At ten, Samuel exhibited decided musical 
predilections, and began taking piano les- 
sons, fìrst under Jeanne Franko (sister 
of the noted Franko brothers), and later 
under Oscar Skach, at the Columbia Uni- 
versity in New York. Chotzinoff also 
studied theory and composition at the 
same insititution under Daniel Gregory 
Mason. He also pursued a general aca- 
demic course at this University. 

Chotzinoff came to the fore as an able 
accompanist, when in 1911 he made a 
concert tour with Zimbalist. In the fol- 
lowing years he was accompanying artist 
to Zimbalist's wife, Alma Gluck, and also to Frieda Hempel. He 
reached the peak of his career as accompanist when, in 1919, he 
undertook a tour with the , celebrated violinist Jascha Heifetz, 
whose sister Pauline he subsequently married in 1925. 

Chotzinoff's early musical articles began to appear in Vanity 
Fair and other American magazines in 1923, and on the resigna- 
tion of Deems Taylor he became music editor of the New York 
Worid, one of the most important of the metropolitan dailies. 




IN Europe and especially in Germany, Sandra Droucker is no less 
a celebrated pianist than her famous husband, Gottfried Galston. 
She is a pupil of Anton Rubinstein. Like her husband, she ap- 
peared with the most important orches- 
tras .and under the most famous con- 

The writer of this volume met Mme 
Droucker in Bergen, Norway, in 1920, 
where she gave a series of concerts. We 
decided to concertize jointly for three 
months and I had the pleasure of asso- 
ciating with this excellent musician and 
personality. Our tours extended through 
Norway, up to North Cape, and our pro- 
grams consisted of solo numbers and 
sonatas. Her parts of the sonatas as 
well as her solo numbers she performed 
with uncommon virtuosity and deeply 
felt poetry. She possesses a brilliant crystalline technique, a mas- 
culine power, together with the tenderest and fìnest nuances, a 
sense of rhythm and a rarely excellent taste. 


The passing of Richard Epstein (son of the famous Julius Ep- 
stein), in New York City on August 1, 1919, took from the musical 
world an artist of achievements far beyond the ordinary, as well 
as removing from his social circle a man of sterling worth and 
great personal charm. 

Epstein's versatility, combined with his thorough musician- 
ship, made him a notable figure even among the musical elect. 

He was born in Vienna in 1869 and educated at the Conserya- 
tory, studying piano with his father, the eminent teacher, Julius 
Epstein, and theory with Robert Fuchs. He married the daughter 
of Johann Strauss, the "Waltz King," but later was divorced 
from her. 

Under the baton of Richter, he played with the Vienna Phil- 
harmonic Orchestra, as well as with famous Bohemian and Vien- 
nese ensembles. For some time he was professor of piano at the 

306 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Vienna Conservatory ; he tourecì Austria, Roumania, England, 
France, Spain, and America; was accompanist for Olive Frem- 
stad, Julia Culp, Elena Gerhardt, and other famous singers. 

In 1918 his artistic and beautiful ensemble playing added to 
the success of the Elshuco Trio in New York. Ossip Gabrilowitsch 
was among the many who praised him both as teacher and as vir- 
tuoso. Personally, he was everywhere held hrthe highest esteem 
for his fìne manly qualities. 


The NAME of Arthur Friecìheim is known to almost every lover 
and student of music. He attracted universal attention by his 
poise, power, and sincerity in playing. 

Arthur Friedheim was born on Oc- 
tober 26, 1859, in St. Petersburg (Len- 
ingrad). He was a pupil of Anton Rub- 
instein, then pupil and close friend of 
Liszt, in the interpretation of whose 
music he excelled. His first public ap- 
pearance he made when barely nine years 
old, and even then a brilliant career was 
predicted for him. From 1894 he was 
teacher and concert player in the United 
States, then went to England, where he 
became professor of piano playing at the 
Royal College of Music in Manchester 
and remained there until 1904, after 
which he went on a tour through Europe. 
Arthur Friedheim is not only a brilliant pianist but an excel- 
lent conductor and fìrst-rate composer as well. His opera "Die 
Tanzerin," written to his own libretto, was performed by Karl 
Lohse at Cologne in 1904, ancl by Arthur Nikisch in Leipzig in 
1907. From 1908 to 1910 Friedheim conducted in Munich; he 
took part in many Liszt centenary performances in 1911. In 1921 
he was engaged as professor of piano at the Canadian Academy 
of Music in Toronto. 

Friedheim remains to this clay faithful to his friend ancl 
teacher, Liszt. He is preparing a book, a psychological study of 

Among the many clecorations received by Friedheim, the one 
given him by the foi 'mer President Taft at the White House in 
1912, is particularly worthy of mention. 



Following is a list of Friedheim's publications: Piano concerto 
in E flat (1890) ; American March "Pluribus Unum" (1894) ; 
his operas are "Die Tanzerin," "The Christian" (unfinished), and 
"Giulia Gonzaga" (also unfìnished). He has also orchestrated four 
"Hungarian Portrait-Sketches" of Liszt, and his second Rhapsody 
for piano and orchestra. 


Ignaz Friedman was born at Podgorre, near Cracow, Poland in 
February 14, 1882. At three, he showed unmistakable evidences 
of a strong affinity for music and piano. This tendency in a few 
years developed into a serious devotion 

for his chosen art, and a willingness to 
study patiently and effectively. He took 
his first lessons with Mme Grzywinska, 
and later studied for a long term of 
years with the famous master Lesche- 
titzky, whose friend and assistant he 
subsequently became. He began study- 
ing composition with Hugo Riemann in 
Leipzig in 1900. 

At the age of eight, Ignaz was able 
to play remarkably well, and his mu- 
sicianship was such that he could trans- 
pose the fugues of Bach without diffi- 
culty. He appeared throughout Europe 

as a "prodigy pianist" and quickly won fame as a brilliant Chopin 
player. So great was the demand for his services that he did not 
have an opportunity to visit America until 1915, but then post- 
poned the tour on account of the war. 

The coming of Ignaz Friedman to America in 1921 was the 
important musicial event of that year, for Friedman is one of 
that noble cycle of Polish pianists now living, whom musical his- 
tory will record as the greatest of artists of the pianoforte ever 
to be produced at one time by one country : Ignaz Friedman, Ignaz 
Paderewski, Joseph Hofmann, and Vladimir de Pachmann. Com- 
poser, scholar, poet, and virtuoso, Friedman measures up to his 
celebrated colleagues. 

Friedman made his American dèbut in New York City early in 
January of 1921. His gigantic technique. his poetic pianissimos, 
and marveloiis virtuosity caused a veritable sensation. Audiences 
listened to him with awe and greeted him with tumultous applause. 
It was acknowledged everywhere that a Friedman recital is a 

308 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

thrilling affair, and the late James G. Huneker referred to him, 
as "the biggest pianistic hit of the season." 

His whole approach to the piano is that of a powerful artist 
whose work, bench, and tools have no means of frightening him. 
He is master of the piano and he does not f ear it ; he does not pose 
at the piano, nor grimace. He has a quiet, dignifìed manner, and 
he does a "good job" like any other skilled artist. Curiously 
enough, all his powerful technique and grip on the piano was 
taught to Friedman by his fìrst teacher, a woman. 

Friedman completely won the rugged audiences of Germany, 
Scandinavia, Holland, Russia, Poland, and Denmark by the fire ancl 
power of his technical virtuosity, and in those countries where the 
gentler and more romantic moods prevail, such as France, Spain, 
Portugal, Argentine, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and even in non-com- 
mittal England his poetic understanding made as deep an impres- 
sion as did his power. Ignaz Friedman was the recipient of two 
of the most remarkable tributes ever given simultaneously by 
two responsible music critics to one artist. The writers are Deems 
Taylor of the Neiv York World and Max Smith of the Neto York 
American, on the occasion of one of his latest New York appear- 
ances. Under the caption, "One of the Great," Mr. Taylor writes : 

"Ignaz Friedman played stupendously at Aeolian Hall last 
night. This stubby, gray man has a piano technique so utterly 
complete that his playing does not even seem effortless. He sits at 
the piano, exerting himself just about as much as would appear 
seemly in a good average player, and out of the instrument come 
such sounds as it seems impossible for any human pair of hands to 
evoke — glittering scales that approach, flash by, and disappear 
with the speed of lightning and yet are so clearly fìngered that 
every note is clear and round ; runs in sixths, thrills in thirds, chords 
that blare like trumpets, arpeggios that are like a caress — and 
never for a moment technique for its own sake." 

Max Smith says : 

"If you want to be thrilled by the 'Tannhauser' overture, don't 
go to concerts of the Philharmonic or Symphony societies. Hear 
it in the Liszt transcription for piano as played in Aeolian Hall 
by Ignaz Friedman to an audience that went wild with excite- 
ment. How he did it the writer is unable to say. Surely it was 
not with ten fìngers only that he enunciated those oily violin pas- 
sages in clean-cut legato octaves, while proclaiming sonorously the 
chant of the pilgrims. Yet where were the other hands that 
seemed to be scurrying over the keyboard? And beholcl, the feet 
kept close to the pedals, offered no solution to the mystery. It 
was stupendous, it was incredible, what this man accomplished." 

After his recent American appearance, Friedman made con- 
cert tours in Holland, Spain, and Portugal, playing in Madrid no 



less than six concerts in quick succession in place of the two or- 
iginally planned, appearing always as composer-pianist with the 
greatest possible success. From Spain he traveled to South Am- 
erica where, cluring his fìrst month, he gave the record number 
of twenty-three recitals. In Argentine, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, 
and Paraguay he earned a wide and has been re-engaged 
for the next three seasons. 

Friedman has been soloist with every leading orchestra in 
America and abroad, appearing with the world's greatest con- 
ductors. Recently, he has also completed a tour of the larger Can- 
adian cities. 

His interpretations of Tschaikowsky's concerto and Chopin's 
works have absolutely no equal among contemporary pianists. 
Further proof of Ignaz Friedman's profound musicianship and 
studious art is presented in his work of editing the entire Chopin 
and Liszt editions. He is now at work on similar editions of Bach 
and Schumann. 

Friedman has also found time for composition, despite the 
strenuous work of touring throughout Europe and America. To 
date there are nearly 100 compositions to his credit, and these 
are published in all lands. They include: one concerto for piano 
with orchestra, a quintette f or piano and strings, three other string 
quartettes, compositions for piano alone, and several beautiful 
songs. In addition to these he has written many fragmentary 
compositions which are still without classification and in manu- 


Born IN a family of artists, Robert Fischhoff was one of the most 
talented pupils of Door. His uncle, Joseph Fischhoff, professor at 
the Vienna Conservatory, was a friend of Schumann, and one of 
the contributors to the music magazine published by the latter. 
Robert Fischhoff was born in 1857 in Vienna. He studied the piano 
at the Vienna Conservatory under Anton Door, and theory and 
composition under Robert Fuchs, Franz Kren, and Anton Bruck- 
ner. Later he continued his studies with Liszt. He made his fìrst 
public appearance at the age of seven, and was looked upon as a 
"wunderkind." Later in his career he made long concert tours and 
on several occasions played in the courts of many European coun- 
tries, including Prussia, Austria, Sweden, and Denmark. 

In 1884 Fischhoff was appointed professor of the Vienna Con- 
servatory. He left several compositions for the piano, principally 
some excellent piano concertos, which he introduced in Paris ancl 

310 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


A strikingly cosmopolitan artis is Ossip Garbilowitsch, the 
famous Russian pianist and conductor. 

He is one of the few masters of the pianoforte who combines 
with mere virtuosity both poetic feeling 
and soaring imagination, and who pos- 
sesses the power to convey those qual- 
ities not only in his own music, but in his 
interpretation of the works of other 

Thirty years ago in St. Moritz, 
Romain Rolland overheard the boy prac- 
tice in a hotel room, and was much im- 
pressed. Not wishing to interrupt him, 
he waited for a long time, then left a 
letter for the boy in which he predicted 
a great future. At the time Rolland also 
was unknown. 

Just as De Pachmann became known 
as the sympathetic interpreter of the moods of Chopin, so Gabrilo- 
witsch has established himself in an exalted position as one who re- 
veals the piano compositions of the great Pole with superb under- 
standing and with a gift of illumination which transcends mere 

Gabrilowitsch was born in St. Petersburg, on February 7, 1878. 
His father was a well-known jurist of the Russian capital. His 
brothers were musical, and one of them was his fìrst teacher. Later 
he was taken to Anton Rubinstein who was so deeply impressed 
that he earnestly urgecì a career as a virtuoso. Accordingly, the 
boy was entered in the classes of Victor Tolstoff at the St. Peters- 
burg Conservatory (at that time under the supervision of the 
great Rubinstein himself). He also studied composition at the 
Conservatory under Liadow and Glazounof (1888-94). His fre- 
quent personal conferences with the latter, Gabrilowitsch has 
always regarded as of inestimable value. In 1894 he won the 
Rubinstein Prize. From St. Petersburg he went to Vienna, where 
he studied for two years with Leschetizky — another great per- 
sonality to whose influence much of his subsequent success is 
credited. His dèbut he made in Berlin, in October of 1896. Tours 
of Europe and America served to bring him into prompt and well- 
deserved recognition. 

He visited the United States in 1900-1901, 1906, and 1909, in 
which year he married Clara Clemens, the daughter of Mark 



Twain. From 1909 to 1911 he livecl in Munich, where he also con- 
ducted the concerts of the Konzertverein. From 1912 to 1913 he 
toured Europe. After leaving Europe for America in 1914, he 
gave concerts in Boston, New York, and Chicago where he was 
equally successful. In 1917 he conducted an orchestra in New 

It was in 1918 that Gabrilowitsch was offered the conductor- 
ship of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. This honor meant the 
addition of new and arduous duties to his already heavily-taxed 
time, but the temptation to leave the narrow limits of pianoforte 
interpretation for the more colorful fìelds of the great symphonic 
and orchestral works was not to be resisted. As a conductor, 
Mr. Gabrilowitsch has revealed the same extraordinary qualities 
which are such signifìcant factors in his success as a piano vir- 

Since his marriage, Gabrilowitsch has identifìed himself more 
and more with the life of America. The last step in the process of 
his Americanization came in 1921 when he became a citizen of the 
United States, thus forging the one fmal bond of his allegiance to 
the ideals and musical future of this country. 

Gabrilowitsch has an astounding memory. He has a perfect 
technical equipment and his' interpretations are penetratingly 
warm and poetic in the highest sense. Richard Aldrich, music 
critic of the New Yorìc Tim'es, said of him : "His translucent beauty 
of tone, the clearness of his articulation, the beauty of his rhythm 
and phrasing were transportingly united in it." H. T. Finck of 
the New York Post thus commented on his versatility and energy : 
"Never has Ossip Gabrilowitsch played more beautifully and poeti- 
cally than he did Saturday afternoon. He was listened to with 
rapt attention by a large and discriminating audience. One won- 
ders, when hearing Gabrilowitsch, how he fìnds time to conduct 

an orchestra, ancl to play the piano with unfailing mastery as 

he does." 

W. J. Henderson, music critic of the Neio Yorh Heralcl, expressed 
himself as f ollows, af ter one of Gabrilowitsch's New York recitals : 
"As is usual at Gabrilowitsch's recitals, his audience filled the hall. 
His playing of the Bach and Beethoven compositions was mas- 
terly. His various readings showed poetic feeling, technical bril- 
liance and a rich diversified palette of tone colors." 

Gabrilowitsch himself says: "The three men who have ex- 
erted the strongest infiuence upon my artistic development were 
Rubinstein (whom I fìrst heard play when I was a boy of sixteen), 
Mahler, and Leschetiszky, the incomparable teacher. Mahler, who 
had read, as it seemed to me, everything, was one of the great 
minds of the modern period. The extent of his culture was simply 
amazing. Whatever engaged his attention became practically a 
part of himself." 

312 Famous Musicìans of a Wandering Race 

One day Gabrilowitsch was to play in a town which, although 
"short on art was long on cash." To the citizens of the town 
Ossip Gabrilowitsch was simply another of those Russians with 
the unpronounceable names. Then somebody discovered his il- 
lustrious family connection (for Gabrilowitsch is the son-in-law 
of Mark Twain). The men of the town woke up and hustled to 
the concert. Every man who had ever white-washed a fence or 
read the other homely adventures of Tom Sawyer or Huckleberry 
Finn was curious to see anything that touched him, Mark Twain, 
no matter how distantly. 

When Gabrilowitsch stepped out on the stage, he was aston- 
ished to find a huge audience overwhelmingly masculine. But 
half-way through the program he overheard a comment that en- 
lightened him, when one man whispered loudly to another: "He 
may be Mark's son-in-law, but he sure can play!" 

As Gabrilowitsch quaintly remarked, "That particular recital 
represented to me the triumph of music over literature, for at the 
end of it the audience undoubtedly was liking me f or my music and 
not simply because of my illustrious American affìliation." 

Up to a few years ago, Gabrilowitsch gloried in the most 
spectacular head of hair barring perhaps Paderewski's, since Sam- 
son's time. But after an experience with a cigar lighter, when 
a part of his locks were unceremoniously singed, he sacrifìced 
himself on the altar of "safety fìrst," and was shorn to normalcy. 

Although he bears a name that all too few on this side of the 
Atlantic fìnd it easy to pronounce (the accent is on the lo) , Gabrilo- 
witsch is as thoroughly American as naturalization papers can 
make him. He has a little giii, Nina, who fìnds life a serious affair 
trying to live up to her famous parents, to say nothing of her 
celebrated grandfather. 

The home of the Gabrilowitsch family is in Detroit, and is one 
of the show places of the city. But it happens to be little more 
than an interlude in Gabrilowitsch's life. Between his duties as 
conductor of the Detroit Orchestra and his activities as a concert 
artist he has all too little time for home. 

The Fall of 1925 marked the twenty-fìfth anniversary of 
Gabrilowitsch's dèbut in New York. On this occasion the old 
Carnegie Hall in New York was the scene of gala festivities. Leo- 
pold Stokowski conducted, and Gabrilowitsch played Tschaikow- 
sky's "B minor Concerto," the same as he had played at his dèbut, 
and with the same Philadelphia Symphony orchestra whose soloist 
he was twenty-five years before. 

Gabrilowitsch has written a number of songs, an "Elegie" for 
'cello, and some charming pieces for the piano. 




A DISTINGUISHED place in the pianistic world belongs to Gottfriecl 
Galston, the eminent pianist. Born in Vienna on August 31, 1879, 
Gottf ried showed in his childhood a great inclination towards music. 

He studied with Leschetizki from 
1895 till 1901, and for one year (1899- 
1900) with Jadassohn and Reinecke, at 
the Leipzig Conservatory (in theory, 
counterpoint and composition). 

He held a professorship at the Stern 
Conservatory in Berlin from 1903 to 

His wide tours as solo pianist in- 
cluded Germany, Austria, Spain, Aus- 
tralia, New Zealand, France, Russia, 
America (1912), and many other coun- 
tries. His performances are regarded 
as models, for not only is he an out- 
standing technician but a deep and 
earnest musician, and a man of uncommon intelligence. In 1904 
Galston settled in Berlin, having been appointed professor of a 
higher class at the Stern Conservatory. Demand, however, for 
concert appearances by him caused him to relinquish this post in 
1907, the year in which he fìrst gave his cycle concerts devoted to 
the music of Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt and Brahms. He 
has received signal honors, includìng the title of professor ex- 
traordinary at the Imperial Conservatory of Petrograd, and was 
invited to play at the concerts of the Paris Conservatoire without 
having made the customary application in writing. In memory 
of his great success there, the Conservatoire had a special medal 
cast for Galston. Among other orchestral appearances for him 
have been those in Paris under Colonne, Lamoureux and Messager ; 
in London, under Richter; in Berlin, under Nikisch; and in New 
York under Walter Damrosch. 

Not only as a pianist, but as a pedagogue Gottfried won a pre- 
eminent place in the musical world of the continent. In Planegg, 
near Munich, Gottfried with his wife, Sandra Drucker, established 
a music center in 1910, and they are attracting a great number 
of pupils from all parts of Europe and America. 

In 1909 Galston wrote a Stuclìenbuch, which is an analytical 
note-book to a series of five historical concerts. 

314 Famous Musicians of a WandeHng Race 


Alexander Goldenweiser, Russian pianist and composer, was 
born on February 26, 1875, in Kischineff, Russia. His first teach- 
er was his mother (who was herself a great pianist), then he 
became a pupil of Pabst and Siloti (1889-1897) in piano, and of 
Arensky, Taneieff, and Ipolitoff Ivanoff in theory. Ple received 
the gold medal of the Moscow Conservatory in 1897. From 1904 
to 1906 he was professor of piano at the Music School of the 
Moscow Philharmonic Society. From 1906 till now he has been 
professor at the Moscow Conservatory, and in 1922 became direc- 
tor. He was a friend of Leo Tolstoy and has written a diary of 
days spent with him. He has also published many songs and 
piano pieces. 


Leopold Godowsky was born in the ancient town Vilna (in the 
Lithuanian province of Russian Poland), on February 3, 1870. 
The ruins of the old castle which stands above Vilna have staunch- 
ly withstood the storms of many cen- 
turies. It was in this old-world atmos- 
phere, in this town of talmudical semin- 
aries and debating cabalists, that the 
child spent the first decades of his life. 
Here, at the early age of nine, he gave 
his fìrst public concert, having shown an 
extraordinary aptitude for music since 
he was three years old. 

Apparently, at that time, the youth 
already possessed defìnite opinions about 
pianoforte teaching, for when in 1883 he 
attended the Hochschule in Berlin, he 
found the instruction so dull and con- 
ventional that he left after a few months, 
entering upon an American tour when but fourteen years of age. 
In the United States he concertized with Clara Louise Kellogg 
and Emma Thursby, also appearing a number of times at the Sun- 
day Orchestra concerts given at the New York Casino. He sub- 
sequently toured the United States and Canada with the violinist, 
Ovide Musin. 

But the young pianist's wish was to study with Liszt, who was 
then in Weimar. One can imagine with what sadness and dis- 

Pianists 315 

appointment the boy learnecì, after arriving in Europe, that Liszt 
had just died. This was in 1886. 

A year later he was presented to Camille Saint-Saens who, 
having heard Godowsky play his own compositions, took the warm- 
est personal interest in his musical education. Unfortunately, 
Saint-Saens' restless spirit led him fre- 
quently to foreign countries, and this pre- 
vented the eager student, who remained 
in Paris for three years, from f ully avail- 
ing himself of the advice of the dis- 
tinguished master. Thus Godowsky is 
practically a self-taught musician. 

Returning to the United States in 
1890, he married Frederica Saxe of New 
York, in 1891. After a sojourn of sev- 
eral months in Europe with his young 
wife, he again set sail for America. He 
soon appeared at the Lenox Lyceum Or- 
chestral Concerts, conducted by Theodore 
Thomas, with such success that he was 
offered numerous engagements, followed 
by an extensive tour during the succeeding seasons. 

At this time he was appointed instructor of the piano teachers 
at the Broad Street Conservatory, in Philadelphia. This was the 
beginning of his career as pedagogue. He did not neglect his con- 
cert engagements, for it was his ambition to co-ordinate these 
two lines of artistic endeavor. Thus it was natural that he should 
accept an offer to direct the piano department of the Chicago 
Conservatory in 1894. Here, at the age of twenty-four, he took 
up the duties relinquished by William H. Sherwood, the famous 
American pianist. 

Like Saint-Saens, Leopold Godowsky is of a restless spirit. In 
1900 he decided to challenge European opinion. The most dis- 
tinguished pianists of the day had long urged him to do this. His 
dèbut in Berlin on December 6, 1900, will forever remain memor- 
able in the annals of the piano-playing world. In one night Godow- 
sky's name was firmly established in the musical firmament. There 
followed nine years of concertizing throughout the world, meeting 
everywhere with the greatest possible recognition of his stupen- 
dous talents, until in 1909 he resumed his pedagogic activities by 
becoming director of the Master School of piano playing at the 
Imperial Conservatory in Vienna. This post was previously 
held by Emil Sauer and F. B. Busoni. In 1912, he returned to the 
United States and established a reputation as the greatest piano 
pedagogue on that Continent. 

Godowsky is a fìrm believer in work. "The fault with many 
students," he says, "is the erroneous idea that genius or talent 

316 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

will take the place of work. They minimize the necessity for care- 
ful, painstaking consideration of the infinite details of technique 
.... But this is not all. Individuality, character, and temperament 
are becoming more and more significant in the highly organized 
art of pianoforte playing. Remove these, and the playing of the 
artist again becomes little better than that of a piano-playing ma- 
chine. ..." 

The one thing in the world to which Leopold Godowsky ob- 
jects most emphatically is being called a pianist! This seems 
strange in view of his world-wide reputation as such, but an ex- 
planation from Godowsky himself throws a new light on the 
matter. A pianist, according to him, is one whose sole medium of 
expression is the keyboard, one whose instrument is the be-all and 
end-all of his existence, and the end as well as the means of his 
artistic expression. Godowsky, on the other hand, has a broader 
concept of art ; and while the piano has served him as an excellent 
medium, he fìnds an equal, if not surpassing, satisfaction in com- 
position and travel. Back from the Orient, where he concertized 
again during the season of 1924-25, just long enough to complete 
his "Java Suite," he made ready to leave New York once more 
in September of 1925, this time for a tour of Egypt, Assyria, and 

"I consider," he said, "that the years I spent in teaching were 
an unfortunate choice of my early career. Of course teaching is 
a noble profession, but I have found that the results are not in 
proportion to the time and effort spent. It is so futile to teach 
where there is no pure gold — like preaching in the wilderness. 
Great genius is exceedingly scarce, and I have not yet found one 
supreme talent. It is discouraging to realize that there is not one 
Chopin or Liszt living today who has created a new art for the 

And so, since the average pupil is in the majority, Godowsky 
has always favored class-teaching, as this involved a lesser ex- 
penditure of the teacher's time and has many advantages for the 
pupils. He believes that a group of pupils will make a greater 
effort to be intelligent than a single person with no competition. 
When Godowsky was director of the Master School of the Imperial 
Royal Academy in Vienna, he taught only in classes. 

"It is more inspiring," he insists, "for the teacher to talk to a 
group. I had forty in my piano classes, fìfteen who played, and 
twenty-five who listened. It was a wonderful master-class, the 
quintessence of piano playing in Europe. The pupils who played 
received the benefìt of the criticisms from the others. Also, we 
were able to cover a greater fìeld of compositions when everyone 
was learning a different work. Thus, class teaching is the only 
means of embracing a large repertoire. Also it is an incentive 



to the student to distinguish himself. There is a competitive 
spirit, a feeling of friendly rivalry, that causes a class pupil to put 
forth a greater effort than a private pupil who has no basis of 
comparison for his work. There is a certain amount of alertness 
in classes, while I have always found that private lessons are 
bound to drag. It is more difficult to go beyond the mere mechanics 
with a private pupil. For one or the other, self-consciousness 
stands in the way, whereas aesthetics can prevail in a large class. 

"And that leads me to say that I have no use for the conven- 
tional type of class teacher, the horn-rimmed type so academically 
stifT ! Perhaps it was this which caused me to make musicians and 
artists out of my pupils, rather than pianists. I am also in favor 
of class lessons in the field of composition. The pupil gets a 
better perspective of his own work. And speaking of composi- 
tion, I am tempted to confess that my greatest wish is that I had 
begun earlier to realize the tremendous satisfaction derived from 
this angle of music as an artistic outlet." 

Godowsky as a composer is quite as delightful as he is in the 
role of pianist. His "Triakontameron," "Renaissance," and 
"Waltzermasken," to say nothing of his prolifìc transcriptions, are 
features of almost every piano repertoire today. In August of 
1925, the three fìrst volumes of his newest work were brought out. 

Since he is of the opinion that travel is one of the fmer arts 
and also that music can be descriptive, he has put two and two 
together and, with his usual ability as a jongleur de mots, has in- 
vented a synonym for sound journeys and named his new compo- 
sitions, "Phonogramas." 

"In order to eliminate the cheap clap-trap endings to pro- 
grams, sending the audience away with a little meloclramatic 
excitement," says Godowsky, "I am doing a series of travelogues, 
ranging from 'Java' to 'jazz.' The 'Java' Suite is now complete 
and will be heard on many programs. 

"Next I shall record my musical impressions of Egypt, As- 
syria and Palestine, as well as those of several European countries. 
Then I shall come back to America and start on the American 
suite I have already planned. This American suite will begin 
with a polyphonic sketch entitled the 'Melting Pot' in which early 
America is shown as a combination of Old World elements. There 
will be a skyscraper movement to denote the energy and power 
of America and its significent aim to reach the skies. A descrip- 
tion of Niagara Falls will symbolize the momentum of American 
life, and there will be local descriptions involving the Negro 
rhythms of the South and the Indian color of the West. Such ele- 
ments as the cowboy and miner will be treated carefully. The 
fìnal sketch will be my conception of glorifìed jazz." 

It has been six long years (1921-27) since New York has heard 

318 Famous Musicians of a Wandenng Race 

Godowsky play, and it will be at least one more before re will play 
there again. It is not because he is giving up his pianistic career. 
On the other hand, he gave concerts in all parts of the world, 
some near and familiar, others remote and strange, because he 
prefers to absorb the ideas, musical and otherwise, of the entire 
universe rather than to stay in one little circle in New York. 

"For instance," he says, "a visit to Java is like entering an- 
other world or catching a fleeting glimpse of immortality. Mu- 
sically, it is amazing. One cannot describe it because it is a simple 
sensation as difficult to explain as color to a blind person, 

"The sonority of the 'gamelan' is so weird, spectral, fantastic, 
and bewitching, and the native music is so elusive, vague, shim- 
mering, and singular, that on listening to this new world of sound 
I lose my sense of reality. It is the ecstasy of such moments, pos- 
sible only through world travel, that makes life full of meaning 
and raises art to the pedestal of the Golden Age." 

When Vladimir de Pachman made his sensational re-appear- 
ances in the United States in 1924, he was asked by an inquiring 
New York reporter whom he considered the greatest pianist. To 
this the old master replied in his characteristic way, "Next to my- 
self comes Leopold Godowsky." 

Godowsky is known to be temperamental at times, and eccen- 
tric. In 1915 or thereabouts, the American newspapers sent out 
an alarm at his sudden and mysterious disappearance. A week or 
two later, he reappeared as if nothing had happened. To all ques- 
tions he simply replied that he had needed quiet and peace in order 
to compose, and had gone away for a few days. 

Godowsky is not only a great pedagogue and technician but an 
outstanding and prolifìc composer. A partial list of his composi- 
tions follow: 

Three concert studies for piano, opus 11; Studies of Chopin's 
Etudes (1904) ; a Piano sonata (1911) ; "Renaissance"— a free 
transcription of old music for piano (1911) ; "Triakontameron" — 
thirty moods and scenes for piano (1920) ; "three Symphonic 
Metamorphoses on Themes by Johann Strauss, for piano; twenty- 
four "Waltzermasken" ; "Educational Adaptations" for piano 
(1915) ; "Phonograms in four books" and twelve "Tonal Journeys" 
(1924-25) ; "Miniatures" — for piano, in four hands; three Suites 
for Piano; "Ancient Dances"; "Modern Dances"; Transcriptions 
of works of Chopin, Schumann, Riehard Strauss, Carl Bohm, Al- 
beniz, and others; two cadenzas to Mozart's Concerto in E flat for 
two pianos; Bach's Sonatas and Suites (consisting of famous works 
for violin solo and cello solo, unaccompanied) , freely transcribed 
and adapted for the pianoforte; and many others, published and in 




IN this day when all of the great pianists of the world are in 
America during the musical season, it becomes increasingly dif- 
fìcult for a newcomer to win recognition. Gitta Gradova made 
her dèbut in New York, in a year notable 
for its number of piano concerts and 
achieved one of the most striking and 
individual successes of recent years. Al- 
though Gradova is one of the younger 
American pianists (she was born in 
1904), she is already accorded a place 
with the most interesting artists of the 
time. She is regarded by critics as an 
authoritative exponent of Scriabin's mu- 
sic, but her repertoire is an eclectic one, 
'ranging from Bach to the moderns. 
Gradova has at her command almost 
everything in the piano repertoire, and 
her programs are considered models of 
their kind. Her interpretations are most individual. Regarding 
them one of America's foremost critics, H. T. Parker of Boston, 
wrote: "Bach, Chopin, Scriabin, Liszt, each with a thrill, each 
with the stamp of a personality upon the music." 

Because of her pronounced pianistic talent, her general educa- 
tion was obtained at the Lewis Institute in Chicago where she 
could study music as well as English, classical literature, ethics, 
French, and philosophy. She began her study of the piano at the 
age of seven under local teachers. When twelve years old, she gave 
a program of three concertos, accompanied by a small orchestra. 

In the Spring of 1920 she became the pupil of Mme Djane 
Lavoie-Herz, a friend and disciple of Scriabin, with whom she has 
continued to prepare her programs. Mme Lavoie-Herz insistecl 
on four years of concentrated training and f orbade concert appear- 
ances during that time. 

Gittà made her dèbut in New York in Town Hall on November 
20, 1923 and won a gratifying success, which was confìrmed in 
her second New York recital on January 28, 1924. The press com- 
ments show how quickly she captured the New York public and 

W. J. Henderson of the New York Herald-Tribune, wrote: 
"She is in many respects one of the best and most talented young 
pianists heard Ìiere in some time. Virility and great power, musi- 
cal insight, an astounding command of fìnger technique, together 
with feeling and imagination, were qualities observed in her style. 

320 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

The Dante Sonata of Liszt performed with much bravura, brought 
'bravos' from the audience." 

The story of Gradova's parentage is one in which the air of 
romance predominates. One is impressed with the sense that she 
is indeed an exotic personality and, in a mysterious way, a true 
child of the muses of music and drama. Her parents were highly 
endowed musically and possessed exceptional dramatic and artistic 
powers. For many years they performed in Russian, German and 
Yiddish plays in Southern Russia, Egypt, Greece, Asia Minor and 
Turkey, and the Balkans. In their devotion to the arts, they lived 
a nomadic life of which they at length tired. They settled in 
Chicago twenty years ago, and continued their work in the theatre, 
appearing in the leading Chicago Yicìcìish Stock. 

Gitta, like most great pianists, showed her gifts for piano play- 
ing at a very early age, but she escaped the fate of most musically 
precocious chilclren. Her parents and her friends realized that a 
premature plunge in the musical waters would be harmful, and 
she studied consistently until the time for her New York dèbut 
arrived. The wisdom of the course was proved immediately by 
the amazing reception which came to her. 

Although Gradova has studied the liberal arts and is a well- 
educated young woman, she naturally devotes most of her time 
to music. Her study has been intensive and she has an amazing 
knowledge not only of the Rusisan music in which some hold her 
as a specialist, but of the music of all times. She knows her Bach 
as well as she knows her Scriabin, and she is conceded to be one 
of the foremost exponents of the great Russian master. 

Gradova has made rapid stricles in her art since her fìrst New 
York recital. In her two subsequent recitals in the metropolis, ancl 
also in her appearances in Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Toronto, 
Montreal, and other cities, she has been acclaimed as one of the 
most gifted of the younger pianists. Her fìrst appearance with 
orchestral forces was with the Cincinnati Symphony in Cesar 
Franck's "Variations Symphoniques," on March 25 and 26, 1924. 
She also played the Griffes "Sonata" at the concert of the Franco- 
American Musical Society in Aeolian Hall, New York, on January 
18, 1924, and appearecl during the same year in two colleges of 

Gradova believes strongly in what Shaw has called "the sanity 
of art," and her aim is to reveal as clearly as she can the messages 
of the composers whose music she interprets. Scriabin ceases to 
be an enigma when she plays his works, Bach is not "heavy," and 
Chopin is not maudlin. Gradova does not look on a page of 
printed music as an assortment of symbols corresponding to keys 
on the piano. To her it is the composer's thought, and her brilliant 
technique goes entirely to turning this thought into tone. Con- 
sequently, her interpretations are uniformly sound and interesting. 




Otto Goldsmidt, though he walked in the shadow of his incom- 
parable wife, Jenny Lind, was not only distinguished as "a gentle- 
man of the highest general culture," but as an accomplished mu- 
sician, co-worker with Sir William Benedict in the development 
of music in London, and in the founding of the Bach Society in 
that city. 

Otto Goldsmidt was born on August 21, 1829, in Hamburg, 
and died in London on February 24, 1907. He was a pupil of 
Jakob Schmitt and Frau W. Grund in Hamburg. Later he entered 
the Leipzig Conservatory, where he was a pupil of Mendelssohn, 
and in 1848 went to Chopin in Paris. He then proceeded to Lon- 
don where he made his dèbut at a concert with Jenny Lind in 1849. 
In 1851 he went with the diva to America where he married her a 
year later. During 1852-55 they lived in Dresden, and from 1858 
in London. Goldsmidt directed the Diisseldorf Music Festival in 
1863, and in Hamburg in 1866. In 1863 he was appointed di- 
rector of the Royal Academy of Music in London, and founded 
the Bach Choir which he developed to high perfection. With 
Bennet he edited the Choral Book of Engìand in 1862. He also 
composed the biblical idyl, "Ruth," a piano concerto, a trio, some 
songs, and sundry other pieces. 


Like i-iis younger brother (the 'cellist Heinrich Griinfeld), Alfred 
was, according to E. Hanslick, a virtuoso who by his bravura and 
fìerce temperament could captivate his audiences completely. Griin- 
feld was one of those extraordinary pianists who could play the 
classics and the modernists equally well. He was well versed 
in almost all schools of music, and his programs were many- 
colored and extremely varied. All those who knew him intimately 
speak of him as a man genial, intelligent, and of rare kindness. 

Alfred Griinfeld was born in Prague on July 4, 1852. He 
received his elementary education in the local conservatory of 
Hoyer, under whom he studied the piano. Later he studied under 
Theodore Kullak in Berlin. 

He began his public career when still very young, and soon at- 
tracted the attention of connoisseurs and critics. Most often he 
appeared with his brother, the famous 'cellist; they were after- 
wards called the "inseparables." 

322 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Grùnf elcì was honored by the title of Prussian Court Soloist, as 
well as the title of Austrian Chamber Virtuoso. 

He enriched piano literature by a number of melodic and mu- 
sical pieces, excellent from the technical point of view. 

Like his brother, Alfred was the friend and chum of many 
celebrities of his day, as well as of crowned heads. 


Among naturally gifted virtuosi is Heinrich Herz, or as he pre- 
ferred to b.e called in Paris, Henri Herz. He was born January 6, 
1806 in Vienna. Like his teacher Franz Gurstein, he became a 
naturalized Frenchman. 

At eight he made public appearances. 
Later he, as well as his younger brother, 
the pianist Jacques Herz, became a pupil 
of the Paris Conservatory. He succeeded 
so well that he was awarded the Premiere 
Prix. Having finished the course at the 
Conservatory under Ignaz Moscheles, 
Herz met everywhere with an enthusiasm 
which in this day of calm and dignity is 
hardly imaginable. 

From 1846 to 1850 he toured the 
United States and South America. Par- 
ticularly interesting is the book he wrote 
about his travels, published in 1856. 
Not counting his tours in America, his principal residence was 
Paris. He became one of the best piano professors at his Alma 
Mater in that city. 

For a long time Herz was famous as one of the greatest tech- 
nicians of his time, and one of the most prolific composers for the 
piano. His compositions have now been shelved, but it is a fact 
that in his lifetime he was unusually popular, and that his many 
variations, fantasies, rondos, and other salon pieces could be 
heard in courts and concert halls. 

Aside from the above-mentioned activities, Herz also became 
one of the founders of a large piano factory. In the beginning he 
made many sacrifìces, but thanks to his intelligence, energy, and 
enterprise, succeeded in bringing this business to such a level that 
his pianos fìnally could compete with the best of his time, and at 
the World Fair in Paris, 1855, were awarded fìrst prize. 

Iierz died January 5, 1888, in Paris, leaving eight concertos 
for piano, over two hundred salon pieces, the book Mes Voyages, 
and the very well known Piano Exercises, under the title Hanon. 




Tins eminent pianist and teacher was born in Kharkov, Russia, on 
April 18, 1879, and received his fìrst lessons from Schulz-Evler. 
Later he went to the University of Moscow, where he studied 
natural sciences. At the same time he continued his piano training 
at the Imperial Conservatory with Pabst, Sapelnikoff, and Kwast, 
passing all the examinations with distinction. In 1905 he con- 
tinued his studies for two years with Emil Sauer in Vienna, under 
whom he won the First Austrian State Prize, this being a competi- 
tive examination at the Piano Master School. Giinzburg then 
taught successfully for ten years at the Klindwort-Scharwenka 
Conservatorium in Berlin, his piano classes having the reputation 
as the best in that Institute. Gùnzburg distinguished himself 
not-only as a teacher, but as an excellent concert pianist, as well. 

In April, 1921, he went to Mexico City, where he was en- 
gaged by the Mexican Ministry of Instruction as Professor of the 
Conservatorio Nacional, as pianist-leader of the quartet "Cuarteto 
Clasico Nacional," and as standard soloist of the Symphony Or- 
chestra Concerts. 

In 1923 he became head of the piano department at the Detroit 
Institute of Musical Art. 


One op the best known of contemporary Russian pianists, Mark 
Hambourg, was born on June 1, 1879, in Bogutschar, Southern 
Russia. He is the son of Michael and Catherine Cecilie Hambourg, 
and brother of Jan and Boris Ham- 
bourg. Mark studied the piano with his 
father in London and with Leschetizky 
in Vienna. 

He made his dèbut with the Moscow 
Philharmonic Orchestra in 1888, and has 
appeared with the Vienna, Paris, Berlin, 
St. Petersburg (Leningrad), and Lon- 
don Philharmonic Orchestras; also at 
the Colonne and Lamoureux concerts in 
Paris, and with Ysaye in Brussels. In 
the course of his career, he toured Rus- 
sia, Switzerland, Australia, South Af- 
rica, the United States, and Canada. 
Mark Hambourg wa's a wonder-child 
in his day, ahd made many successful appearances as a prodigy. 

324 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

The fact that he also developed into a mature pianist and artist of 
rank is undoubtedly due to his parents' wise precautions in with- 
drawing him from public appearances for a number of years to 
develop his general education. 

In 1907 Mark Hambourg married Dorothea, daughter of Sir 
Kenneth Muir Mackenzie, Permanent Clerk of the House of Lords. 

He has composed "Variations on a Theme of Paganini," "Im- 
promptu Minuet," "Romance Espieglertè," all for the piano, and 
also written a book, How to Beconie a Pianist. 

Mark Hambourg's brother Jan, the brilliant violinist, was born 
in Voronetz, Russia, on August 27, 1882. He studied with Wilhelmj 
and Sauret in Lonclon, with Kikermann in Frankfort, with Sevcik 
in Prague, and with Ysaye in Brussels. He made his dèbut in 
Berlin in 1905, and has since toured widely alone and with his 


Myra Hess is a pianist who can be heard with unalloyed pleasure. 
One may marvel at her beauty of tone, her command of nuances, 
her ease in dismissing technical difficulties, her range of senti- 
ments and emotions, her irresistible 
grace and dash, her 'aesthetic intelli- 
gence, but one is always conscious that 
with her the chief aim of her perfor- 
mance is to reveal the spirit of the com- 

She is of the line of world-distin- 
guished women pianists, which includes 
Teresa Carreno and the late Sophie 
Menter, of whom she may be accounted 
the successor. Miss Hess was born in 
Hampstead, London, thirty-two years 
ago, the youngest of four children. Her 
parents so quickly perceived the child's 
exceptional talents that they made her 
begin her studies at the age of five. Two years later she passed 
her first examination at Trinity College, London. From the age 
of seven to twelve she was a student at the Guild-hall School of 
Music, after which she went to the Royal Academy of Music, where 
she became a pupil of Tobias Mathay. Here she had a distin- 
guished career, winning the gold medal for pianoforte playing 
and subsequently being made Associate and Fellow. 



She gave her fìrst piano recital at Aeolian Hall, London, on 
January 25, 1908, with such success that before the year was out 
she had played at important orchestral concerts at the Royal Al- 
bert Kall and Queen's Hall and on the Continent. 

The foundation of her success is an unusual mental comprehen- 
sion and artistic acumen. Her readings, far more than her bril- 
liant executive fluency, make her performance memorable. They 
are interpretations in the fullest sense of the word. Her playing 
has none of the brutality of man and none of the weakness of 
woman. Her playing is herself. 

She is impressive and yet winning, with plenty of forcefulness 
and the ability to preserve the musical beauty of her tone through 
all tlie mazes of technical intricacy. She seems to feel musically 
in every fìber, so that her expression upon her instrument is 
spontaneous and natural and has the quality of inevitableness 
inherent in great art. 

Recently Myra Hess was asked whether she is of Jewish ex- 
traction : 

"Not only that," she answered, "but I was brought up in an 
orthodox home. My parents taught me Hebrew when a child, but 
I have since forgotten it. It is impossible for an artist to keep up 
the Orthodox faith. Besides, one's icleas do change. I look at 
life a little differently now." 


Vladimir Horowitz, the eminent pianist, was born on October 1, 
1904, in Kieff, of a well-to-do, artistically inclined Russian family. 
At an early age he showed remarkable pianistic gifts, encouraged by 
his parents who recognized his great tal- 
ent. Entering the Conservatory of Kieff, 
he studied under Professor Blumenfeld, 
and graduated with the highest honors. 
The fìrst years of his professional career 
were spent giving concerts in the prin- 
cipal cities of his native Russia. In 1924, 
a boy of twenty, he started on a tour of 
Europe, conquering in quick succession 
Germany, Holland, Italy, France, Aus- 
tria, and Spain. An indication of his 
standing as a pianist is the fact that Leo- 
polcì Stokowski has engaged him to make 
his dèbut as soloist with the Philadelphia 
Orchestra. Vladimir Horowitz comes to 
America in the Autumn of 1927, preceded by an unusual reputation, 

326 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

His first American tour will undoubtedly be a repetition of his 
triumphal march through the music centres of Europe. 

In the Neiv York Times of December 19, 1926, Henry Prunieres, 
editor of La Revue Musicale and one of the Continent's leading 
critics, wrote in a dispatch from Paris: "The event of the week 
was the reappearance of the great Russian pianist, Vladimir 
Horowitz. Horowitz is twenty-three. He is without question the 
greatest pianist of the rising generation. Berlin critics unani- 
mously hailed him as the successor of Busoni. His fìrst Paris con- 
cert last year was a revelation. He has all the technical gifts in 
addition to an exquisite musical sensitiveness. He excels in the 
interpretation of Bach and Liszt, but he can play Ravel and De- 
bussy to perfection. From the start this young artist has been 
classed among the pianists of the first rank; one can only com- 
pare him to Paderewski or to Busoni. Those who heard Anton 
Rubinstein think that they have rediscovered the Russian pianist 
in Horowitz. Horowitz is conquering Europe with startling rap- 
idity, without adventitious publicity. His tour in Germany was a 
triumph and at the Concerts in the Conservatoire here, he received 
an endless ovation." 


Ignace Hilsberg was born in Warsaw, Poland, on July 8, 1894. 
While very young, he displayed such remarkable aptitude and tech- 
nical command of the piano that at the age of nine he was soloist 
with the Warsaw Philharmonic Sym- 
phony, playing Beethoven's second con- 

When Ignace was eight years old, he 
was given his first teacher, Oberfeld. 
His appearance at the Symphony Or- 
chestra having won him a scholarship at 
the St. Petersburg Conservatory. He 
studied there for three years with the 
Professors Essipoff and Vengerova, con- 
tinuing after the former's death with 
the noted Professor Dubasoff. On his 
graduation he was summoned to play 
before the Imperial family. 

He moved eastward from St. Peters- 
burg to Tomsk, Siberia, where he accepted a professorship in the 
Tomsk Conservatory. After a year in that city, he started 
toward the Orient, giving many concerts en route. In Ghina he 



was invited to play before the President in the Palace at Peking, 
and was awarded a medal as Chevalier of the Chinese Republic. 

Vienna welcomed Hilsberg on his return from the Orient. He 
became a friend of the world-f amous Professor Sauer, with whom 
he spent much time in study, absorbing the best of the master's 
methods. On Sauer's suggestion, he journeyed to Athens, holcl- 
ing for two years a professorship at the Royal Conservatory, and 
frequently playing for the king. 

He came to America in the Summer of 1923 at the height of his 
artistic power, after having established so enviable a reputation 
abroad as a pianist of great sincerity, understanding, and beauty. 
A year after his arrival there, 'he was selected by the Stadium 
Committee from among hundreds of applicants to be soloist with 
the New York Philharmonic Orchestra at the Lewisohn Stadium, 
and proved beyond question his appeal to musicians of discrim- 
inating musical taste. 

Since his arrival in America, Hilsberg has appeared as soloist 
with the symphonies of Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, 
New York, Buffalo, Newark, and other large musical centers. In 
March of 1924 Bruno Walter, the famous conductor, gave Hils- 
berg this recommendation : "Ignace Hilsberg is a pianist with ex- 
cellent technique and sincere feeling — a rare musician." 


Julius Isserlis, who is one of the most outstanding of the many 
pianists Russia has given to the world in the present gen- 
eration, was born in Kishineff, Russia, on October 26, 1889. His 
studies began when he was four years 
old, In his eighth year, his teacher, a 
Mr. Koleze, sent him to Professor 
Pachulsky of the Conservatory in Kieff. 
Elated with his talents, Pachulsky taught 
him until he was eleven and then brought 
him to Safonoff in Moscow. 

In his thirteenth year, Isserlis ap- 
peared in a Symphony Concert in mem- 
ory of Anton Rubinstein, playing Chop- 
in's "Polish Fantasy," with Safonoff 

In 1905 he graduated as gold medal- 
ist from the Moscow Conservatory and 
left for Berlin, where he concertized 
with great success. He then went to Paris, where his talents at- 

328 Famous Musìcians of a Wanclering Race 

tracted Diemier, the head of the Paris Conservatory. At the same 
time he also appeared as soloist in Switzerland, and in Paris under 

In 1907-08 he was invited by Modest Altsehuler to come to New 
York, where he played with enormous success at the concerts of 
the "Russian Symphony Society," under Altschuler and Safonoff. 

It wr.s in 1913 that he accepted the position as Professor at the 
Moscow Philharmonic School, where he remained until 1918. After 
resigning f rom that post. he devoted himself exclusively to concerts. 
He toured all over Russia, Vienna, Prague, Belgrad, Germany, and 

At present this eminent pianist is living in Vienna, where he 
is very active both as concert-performer and pedagogue. 


Alberto Jonas, celebrated piano virtuoso and teacher, was born 
in Madrid, Spain, on June 8, 1868. He is the son of Julius and 
Doris Jonas, who came to Spain from Germany. Alberto Jonas 
studied music with Olave and Mendizabel 
at the Conservatory in Madricì, the Brus- 
sels Conservatory, and with Rubinstein 
in St. Petersburg. 

He made his dèbut in Berlin in 1891 
with the Philharmonic Orchestra, and 
then made extended and very successful 
concert tours in Germany, Austria, Hol- 
land, Belgium, Russia, Spain, England, 
Central America, the United States, and 
Canada. Jonas played before the Em- 
peror and Empress of Germany, and the 
King and Queen of Spain. From 1894 
to 1898 he was instructor in advanced 
piano playing at the Music School of 
the University of Michigan, and later became president and di- 
rector of the Michigan Conservatory of Music in Detroit. From 
1898 to 1904 he was head of the piano department of the Klind- 
worth-Scharwenka Conservatory of Music in Berlin, but resigned 
because of the demands of a large class of private pupils. Two 
of his "wunderkinder," including Pepito Arriola, appeared before 
the courts of Germany and Spain. 

Like all musicians who have won fame, Jonas showecì his 
genius for music in early childhood. His fìrst musical studies 
were not made with the object of following a professional career, 



for his father wanted him to become what he himself was — a suc- 
cessful business man. For this purpose he was sent by his father 
to England and France in order to study the business methods of 
those countries. His love for music, however, grew from day to 
day and fmally conquerecì the opposition of his father, as well 
as all other obstacles. 

He entered the Royal Conservatory of Brussels. When he 
was examined, those who had charge of the piano class told him 
there was little hope for his achieving success, as he was "too old 
to begin." He was then eighteen. In 1888 he won the fìrst prize 
in open competition, against nineteen competitors, in the presence 
of the Queen of Belgium and an audience of 2,000 persons. He 
also won the fìrst prize for theoretical and practical harmony, 
counterpoint, and reading of orchestra scores, as well as the Rubin- 
stein prize in St. Petersburg in 1890. 

During the next three years he studied piano by himself, de- 
veloping and applying to his own playing a system that later gave 
him fame in Berlin, where he taught from 1904 to 1913, as one of 
the greatest pedagogues in the world — a system that is embodied 
in his work, Master School of Piano Playing and Virtuosity. 

Alberto Jonas has played during two decades with immense 
success all over Europe and North and Central America. His 
name is known and respected in the musical circles of all coun- 
tries. Jonas is the teacher of many famous pianists. He is also 
well known as a composer, his piano pieces being featured on the 
programs of many virtuosi. In his four-fold capacity of piano 
virtuoso, pedagogue, composer, and writer, Alberto Jonas stands 
out today as one of the dominant fìgures of the musical world. 

Since 1914, Alberto Jonas has been living in New York City 
where he devotes himself to pedagogical activities, (his handsome 
home is the mecca of talented students from all over the world), 
and to the completion of his book, already mentioned. This work, 
the most elaborate and complete work on piano in existence, has 
the unique distinction of having the collaboration of practically all 
the greatest living piano virtuosos. Their own technical exercises 
are contained in the Master School. It is published in six books, 
of about 250 pages each, by Carl Fischer, the New York publishers. 

This book was written with the collaboration of Fannie Bloom- 
fìeld-Zeisler, Ferruccio Busoni, Alfred Cortot, Ernst von-Doh- 
nanyi, Arthur Friedheim, Ignaz Friedman, Ossip Gabrilo- 
witsch, Rudolph Ganz, Leopold Godowsky, Katherine Goodson, 
Joseph Lhevinne, Moritz Rosenthal, Emil Sauer, and Sigismund 
Stojowski. It embraces all the technical and esthetic elements re- 
quired for the highest pianistic virtouosity. It gives excerpts 
from all the best pedagogical works extant, and approximately 
1,000 examples, instructively annotated, taken from the entire 
classic and modern piano literature. 

330 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In breadth of scope, originality, and clearness of execution, the 
book is unprecedented. It has been written by its author in Eng- 
lish, German, French, and Spanish, and is being introduced in 
every musical country. 

Following is a partial list of Jonas' compositions : "Fantasy 
Pieces," opus 12; "Northern Dances"; "Toccata"; "Valse in C 
sharp minor"; and many songs. 

He has also translated into Spanish Gevaert's Instrumentation 
(1903) and Pianoscript Book (1918). 

A cosmopolitan in every sense, Alberto Jonas has the distinc- 
tion of being a member of the Red Cross of Belgium and of Spain. 


Rafael Joseffy, whose father was rabbi of Pressburg, was one 
of the most talented pupils of Taussig. He was born on July 3, 
1852, in Hunfalu, Hungary. In boyhood a pupil of Brauer, in 
Budapest, Joseify studied later at the 
Leipzig Conservatory under Wenzel in 
Berlin, and under Liszt in Weimar. He 
made his dèbut in Berlin in 1872 and 
was hailed as Taussig's successor. Dur- 
ing the next fìve years he gave concerts 
in the principal musical centers of 
Europe. In 1879 he visited New York, 
playing at an orchestral concert given by 
Dr. Leopold Damrosch in Chickering 
Hall (October 13, 1879) ; he later played 
with the Philharmonic Orchestra and 
with Theodore Thomas. He settled in 
New York as concert pianist and teacher, 
where his outstanding technique and 
broad catholicity of taste brought him an unusually large number 
of engagements and pupils. He was also one of the fìrst exponents 
of Brahms in America. His public appearances were rare, but 
those that he made were regarded as events of the musical season. 

Joseffy had almost completed editing the works of Chopin 
when he died m New York on June 25, 1915. As a teacher, Joseffy 
was in great demand. He developed a great number of the pianists 
who now occupy leading places in the artistic world and undoubt- 
edly exercised a far-reaching influence on the present generation, 
not only of America, but of other lands as well. 

Joseffy left several works of great importance. Among these 
are his School of Aclvanced Piano Playing. Besides the pianoforte 
works of Chopin, he also edited the pianoforte studies of Czerny, 
Henselt, Moscheles, Schumann, etc. 




■ ^ 

Harry Kaufman, pianist and accompanist, was born in New 
York City on September 6, 1894, of Russian parents, being the 
youngest of thirteen children. His father until the age of eighty- 
two taught Hebrew to the fast-growing 
generations of American Jews of the 

On being graduated from public 
school, Harry entered the City College 
and also the Institute of Musical Art (as 
a scholarship pupil under Sigismond 
Stojowski), and studied harmony there 
under Percy Goetschius. In 1913 he went 
to Germany. There he studied harmony 
and composition under Kreutzer. Lack 
of funds forced him to return after a 
year. He secured a position playing with 
an orchestra in Boston's finest hotel. 
This experience afforded him excellent 
training in ensemble playing. He continued to study music by 
himself, giving several hours daily to intensive work at the piano, 
and virtually teaching himself Russian, French, and German. He 
now speaks these languages with no trace of foreign accent, and 
coaches singers in enunciation. He is exceedingly well read in the 
literature of these languages as well. Of course, the traditional 
Yiddish and Hebrew has been familiar since childhood. 

In 1919 Kaufman was playing in a hotel in Atlantic City with 
the violinist Beerman, the uncle of Toscha Seidel. When young 
Seidel arrived in America, his uncle recommended Harry Kauf- 
man as his accompanist, but Kaufman had too little self-confidence 
to accept. Not until his friends packed his grip, bought his ticket, 
and engaged a substitute for his orchestra position did he travel 
to New York for a hearing. He was engaged at once, for he gave 
evidence of being a thoroughly equipped musician, technically and 
artistically balanced for the work of accompanying a violinist. 
For two years Kaufman and Seidel toured the United States, and 
for the next two years played with Efrem Zimbalist. The list of 
those artists whom Kaufman has accompanied, and with whom he 
appeared as co-artist in public and private, reads like a musical 
Who's Who. It includes the late George Hamlin, Charlotte Lund, 
Carl Flesch, Carlos Sedano, Felix Salmond, Pablo Casals, Jascha 
Heifetz, Mischa Elman, Erika Morini, and many others, 

332 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In the Summer of 1922, Harry Kaufman was one of the two 
pianists of a list of 745 applicants to win the Stadium Audition 
of the year. At the Stadium that summer he played the Liszt "E 
flat major Concerto" with the Philharmonic Orchestra. In Oc- 
tober of the same year and in the same month of the following 
year, he was heard in recitals, receiving excellent notices from the 
metropolitan dailies. 

Kaufman has since been engaged by the Curtis Institute in 
Philadelphia as the official accompanist of that institution, ancl 
also as teacher in the piano department under Josef Hofmann, 
with whom, by the way, he is a great favorite. 


Leonid Kreutzer is an outstanding Russian pianist and conduc- 
tor. He was born on March 13, 1884, in St. Petersburg, Russia. 
At the age of five he commenced the study of piano with Blum- 
berg, from whom he secured his first 
serious conception of theory and piano 
playing. It is curious to note that in his 
childhood he studied the violin but that 
the piano predominated as his chosen in- 
strument. His father, a lawyer by pro- 
fession, did not permit his son's educa- 
tion to be neglected and sent him through 
preparatory school, after which thc 
young Leonid entered the St. Petersburg 
Conservatory, studying piano under thc 
famous Mme Essipowa, and composition 
under Glazounoff. 

Kreutzer's dèbut was made in 1905 
with the Moscow Philharmonic Society, 
where he played Rachmaninoff's "Second Concerto," making a 
tremendous success. Shortly after, he left Russia and settled in 
Germany (fìrst living in Leipzig, and after 1908 in Berlin). Since 
1906, Kreutzer has been concertizing extensively over the Con- 
tinent and has appeared as soloist with practically every leading 
European orchestra. It is worthy of notice that he is known, not 
only as a pianist of the fìrst rank, but also as a conductor, having 
conducted the fìrst performance of a number of Reger's orchestral 
works. His dèbut as conductor was made in Leipzig in 1908, since 
which time he has conducted on various occasions. 

In 1921 Kreutzer was appointed professor of piano at the Staat- 



liche Hochschule fiir Musik in Berlin, where he holds an esteemecl 
position in the pedagogical fìeld. 

He is the author of two books on piano-playing, Das normale 
Klavier-pedal (Leipzig, 1915), and Das Wesen der Klaviertechnilc 
(Berlin, 1923). He has made special editions of Liszt, Chopin, 
and other composers. 

Kreutzer has also found time for composition, being author of 
the pantomime "Der Gott und die Bajadere" (performed at the 
Mannheim and Berlin Opera Houses), and sundry other works. 

On January 1, 1927, Kreutzer made his American dèbut with 
the Philharmonic Orchestra under Mengelberg, scoring a great 
success, after which he appeared also with the Detroit Symphony 
under Gabrilowitsch, and with the Cincinnati Symphony under 
Fritz Reiner, as well as giving numerous other recitals and con- 


Alexander Lambert (son of Henry and Salomèe Lambert), 
eminent Polish pianist and teacher, was born in Warsaw, on Nov- 
ember 1, 1863. His father was a musician of reputation, and 
under him the boy began began his mus- 
ical studies at the age of ten. He was 
then, by the advice of Rubinstein, sent 
to Vienna, where he entered the conser- 
vatory, and after completing his studies 
under Julius Epstein, was graduated at 
the age of sixteen with the gold medal 
of the Conservatory. He afterwards 
spent some time at Weimar studying un- 
der Liszt, and in due time was heard in 
concert in Germany. He then came to 
the United States and, though he ap- 
peared almost unheralded, met with the 
most flattering success. 

Lambert was heard first in the Schu- 
mann G minor Piano Sonata, and with this gained the admira- 
tion, not only of the audience but of the critics. He appeared at 
Steinway Hall, New York, with Remenyi, sharing honors with the 
Hungarian violinist. His touch was described as bold and free, 
his attack sure and daring, his tone large and round, and his con- 
ceptions just. His dexterity was noted as well as his earnest con- 
scientious work. Like so many musicians of his nationality, he 
astonished with his brilliancy. 

334 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

He went for a year to Germany. In Berlin, where he was flrst 
heard, the critics spoke in high praise of his work, as revealing a 
beautiful pearly technique, naturalness, and freshness in his con- 

During his sojourn in Germany, he met and spent much time 
with Moszkowski and later with Joachim, who engaged him for a 
tour through Germany. 

Lambert accompanied Joachim as far as Kiel, where he played 
before the Prince and Princess of Schleswig-Holstein. Then he 
filled an engagement to take part in Terisina Tua's concerts. Af- 
terward he was invited to play by the Philharmonic Society of 
Berlin on the occasion of the anniversary of Beethoven's cleath. 
By the advice of Hans von Bulow, he gave the great composer's 
C major and C minor concertos, with the original cadenzas. The 
choice was an exceedingly happy one, and he won the interest of 
the Berlin public and the praise of the Berlin press in a season 
that had been made remarkable by Rubinstein, Hans von Biilow, 
D'Albert, Scharwenka, and Clara Schumann. 

Leaving Poland, Lambert paid a visit to his native city, War- 
saw, where he macle the acquaintance of the violinist Sarasate, 
with whom he afterwards concertized. Thence he went to Wei- 
mar, where he spent four months in daily communication with 
Franz Liszt, Mme Montigny-Ramaury, Mme Alfred Jaell, Siloti, 
Friedheim, Felix Weingartner, and Saint-Saens. Of this sojourn, 
Lambert says: "He who has enjoyecl the distinction of being the 
object of the Master's solicitude, knows how precious is every 
worcl of Liszt's while one is playing for him." 

Returning to New York, Lambert resumed his work in the 
musical world. He had added much to his repertoire, and made 
his second entrèe at one of the concerts with the G minor piano 
concerto by Saint-Saèns. He played with his accustomed bril- 
liancy of technique, with added poetic charm, and complete beauty 
of tone, "a clear and silvery touch" full of color as occasion de- 
mands, and a clelicacy of delivery that was very fascinating. He 
began to fulfìll the predictions of his earlier admirers. Of an- 
other appearance a critic wrote: "Lambert played the Liszt Hun- 
garian Fantasie with tremendous power and dash. We have few 
pianists who could so stir up an audience without resorting to 
trickery of any kind." 

Subsequently there followecl engagements with America's lead- 
ing symphonic organizations under Damrosch, Seidl, ancl others. 

At the age of twenty-three, Lambert settlecl permanently in 
New York City. He became head of the New York College of 
Music and remained director thereof for eighteen years. By his 
unwearying energy and devotion he has brought this institution 
to a very high place. 



Lambert is now one of New York's acknowledged great piano 
teachers, and to his classes flock pupils from all over the country. 

Among his pupils are Mana-Zucca, Nadia Reisenberg, Julia 
Glass, ancl Beryl Rubinstein. 

Lambert has to his credit among other works: "Etude and 
Bourree" and "Valse Impromptu" both for the piano. He has also 
written Piano Method ancl Systematic Course of Studies. 


Tiie biography of this illustrious artist is the story of a person- 
ality. From earliest childhood she showed a pronounced passion 
and love for the music of Bach. Born in Warsaw in 1877, Wanda 
Landowska studied the piano, first under 
Michalowski and Noskowski at Warsaw 
Conservatory, and completed her studies 
under G. Urban in Berlin. 

Coming to France in 1900, she evi- 
denced a love for the masters of the 
harpsichord (Clavicembalo) of the sev- 
enteenth ancl eighteenth centuries. Mas- 
ters of the harpsichord have found in 
her an original interpreter, for she has 
added to their works that particular col- 
or we fìnd in beautiful paintings. 

From 1900 to 1913 she was teaching 
harpsichord at the Schola Cantorum in 
Paris ; then she went to Berlin as prof es- 
sor of that instrument at the Berlin Hochschule, and after the 
war returned to Paris. 

She has published among other works : Bach et Ses Interprètes 
(1906), and La Musique Ancienne (1908). 

Wanda Landowska is one of the rare woman virtuosi, who do 
not seem to imitate the playing of men. She has had the intelli- 
gence to conserve for art all the intimate character of her feminin- 
ity. Her interpretation is prof ound, as if she herself had composed 
the music. France recently paid tribute to her genius by naming 
her a chevalier of the Legion of Honor. 

336 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Of the eminent young pianist Tina Lerner, Joseph Hofmann once 
said, when he first met her in 1905 : "If she plays as well as she 
looks, it will be splendid." Soon after hearing her, he predicted 
for her a brilliant future. She was born 
in Odessa, Russia, in 1889, and is the 
daughter of very cultivated and accom- 
plished people. Her father is a journal- 
ist, and both her mother and her grand- 
mother were musicians. Her talent was 
discovered by her grandmother, who on 
arriving home one day heard some one 
playing a difficult study. As this com- 
position happened to be one which she 
had herself vainly tried to master, she 
was overjoyed on entering the room to 
fìnd that the performer was her wee 
grandchild, aged seven. 

"I began my music when about four 
years old," Tina Lener says, "by playing on a toy piano consisting 
of eight keys, which had been given me. My older sister, who was 
studying the piano, noticed this, taught me a little, and I learned 
to pick out little tunes on the real piano. Finally one day my sis- 
ter's teacher, Rudolf Heim, a pupil of Moscheles, was coming to 
the house mainly on my account. 

"Soon after this I was taken to the Professor's studio. He ex- 
amined me, considered I had talent, and thought it should be culti- 
vated. My real musical education then began when I was fìve." 

Soon afterward the Lerners moved to Moscow, where Tina was 
sent to the Philharmonic School; in four years she accomplished 
what some students do in nine years, which is the time required to 
complete a full course. 

Her teacher, Professor Pabst, predicted a brilliant future for 
his pupil, and proved a reliable prophet, for Tina Lerner is now 
recognized as one of the most outstanding pianists of both conti- 
nents, winning the enthusiastic praise of the critics and the musi- 

After her graduation f rom the Moscow Conservatory with high 
honors, she went to the great master and pedagogue, Leopold 
Godowsky, with whom she studied for several years. 

After a joint concert in London in 1908 with Kubelik, Tina 
Lerner received quite as great an ovation as the "great Kubelik." 
When these two young virtuosos appeared later in Brighton, Eng- 

Pianists 337 

land, one of the critics said : "Tina Lerner did not use her piano 
as an excuse for indulging in wild Saturnalian orgies of most un- 
musical souncl, but, on the contrary, made her instrument a vehicle 
for limpid purity, symmetry, and purling sweetness of tone. She 
wove arabesques of dainty fancy in the treble over which De Pach- 
mann himself would have smiled and gurgled approval. . . . Tina 
Lerner at nineteen has risen to a commanding position in the 
musical world." 

Tina Lerner made her American dèbut in November, 1908, at 
Carnegie Hall, New York, when she appeared as soloist of the Rus- 
sian Symphony Society's fìrst concert of the season, under Modest 
Altschuler. She played Rachmaninoff's Second Concerto. The 
Musical America of November 21, 1908, wrote : 

"The interest of the large audience that comfortably fìlled the 
hall was concentrated upon the dèbutante, and the general verdict 
was of the most favorable nature. The little pianist with the 
Madonna face demonstrated that she is the possèssor of not only 
a fìnely developed technique with at times a peculiarly caressing 
and liquid tone, at other times a surprising sonority and brilliance 
of color, but also of true musicianly feelings and taste and an indi- 
vidual charm of style." 

H . T. Finck wrote in the Evening Post : "Miss Lerner is a true 
virtuoso. In the last movement of Rachmaninoff's Concerto the 
pianist rose to a splendid climax. 

Max Smith of the Press wrote : "Miss Lerner made a decidedly 
agreeable impression even on those who did not listen to music with 
their eyes. . . . The little pianist, with her gentle, refìned touch, 
revealed an excellent techinque. In soft passages her scales and 
arpeggios rippled like strings of liquid pearls." 

After her fìrst American piano recital at Mendelssohn Hall, 
New York, on December 4, 1908, the Neiu York Herald wrote: 
"Miss Lerner's playing showed rare taste and a high degree of 
digital facility." Musical America said: "That there is a wide- 
spread interest in the work of this young artist was made evident 
by the size of the audience, which completely fìlled the hall. It was 
furthermore an audience which expressed deep sympathy in the 
work of the performer, and the applause which followed each num- 
ber left no doubt as to the nature of her success. Mme Luisa 
Tetrazzini of the Manhattan Opera House, one of the most dis- 
tinguished of the young Russian pianist's auditors, led in the hand- 

Tina Lerner appeared as soloist with most of the leading or- 
chestras and all the pre-eminent chamber-music organizations of 
both continents. 

Lerner's is a truly musical nature, endowed with unusual talent. 
Her touch is singularly beautiful and she has at her command as a 
colorist a great variety of nuances. 

338 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Aside from her purely musical endowments, Tina Lerner is a 
woman of rare charm and intelligence. 

Together with her husband, the noted conductor, Vladimir 
Shavitsh, she is now living in Syracuse, New York, where they are 
both members of the faculty at the university of that city, and 
where Mr. Shavitsh is the conductor of the Syracuse Philharmonic 


Mischa Levitzki, whose art combines the perfect technique of 
the experienced genius with the virile fìre of enthusiastic youth, 
is a commancling fìgure in the pianistic world of today. His in- 
terpretative gifts are so remarkable that 
they recall the stories told of the pre- 
cocity of Handel, Mozart, and other mas- 
ters, and the miraculous results which 
they obtained from the spinets and harp- 
sichords of their day. 

His poise and assurance are extra- 
ordinary. During the fìrst three seasons 
that he was before the American pub- 
lic, Mischa Levitzki played with prac- 
tically every orchestra of importance in 
the country, including the Boston Sym- 
phony, New York Symphony, New York 
Philharmonic, the Chicago, Minneapolis, 
St. Louis, Cincinnati, Toronto, and Rus- 
sian Symphony Orchestras, not once but many times. During the 
season of 1919-20 he was heard five times with the New York 
Symphony under Walter Damrosch, twice in New York and once 
each in Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, repeating the 
triumphant tour which he had made with the Damrosch players 
the season previously. 

The impresario of the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra was 
one of the fìrst of American managers to recognize Levitzki's great 
gifts; she has included him among her musical offerings every 
season since the fìrst one. Since she now has an orchestra, the 
new Cleveland Orchestra, under her own management, she has 
engaged him for no less than three appearances during the past 
season, twice in Cleveland and once in Oberlin. Levitski also 
played again with the Minneapolis Orchestra in both Minneapolis 
and St. Paul, and with the Detroit Orchestra under the baton of 
Ossip Gabrilowitsch. Both the San Francisco and Los Angeles 



Orchestras were bidders for his services, but owing to the fact 
that his stay in the United States cluring that time was a rather 
short one, on account of the long Australian tour he was made to 
undertake during the season of 1919-20, the Pacific Coast cities 
had to wait for him until the following season. 

Mischa Levitzki is an American although he did happen to be 
born in a town near KieiT in Southern Russia. His father had 
previously resided in America and had become fully naturalized 
before returning to Russia on a business trip. It was during this 
stay that the child was born, and the first eight years of his life 
were passed in the land of the late Czar. It would seem to have 
been a fortunate chance for him, for his personality and his play- 
ing show that the inherent reserve and intensity of the Russian 
character have been tempered by the freedom and spontaneity of 

Mischa was born in Krementschug on May 25, 1898. At the 
age of three he showed a remarkable sense of rhythm, playing 
the drum in an orchestra made up of his three brothers. Neither 
of his parents was particularly musical, and they were not at all 
anxious for a musical career for their son. However, on the 
insistence of a local pianist, he was taken to Warsaw, where he 
studied with A. Michalowski (an excellent routine teacher), from 
1905 to 1906. At the age of eight, his parents brought him to 
New York, where he studied at the Institute of Musical Art under 
Stojowski for four years. 

His outstanding talent caused friends of the family to advise 
that the boy be taken to Europe for further study. With his 
mother and younger sister Bertha, he arrived in Berlin, his heart 
set on becoming a pupil of Ernest von Dohnanyi. He telephoned 
immediately on his arrival, only to be told that Dohnanyi was out 
of the city for several days. He was extremely anxious to play 
for the master, for he knew that the classes in the Hochschule fiir 
Music were being formecl and that Dohnanyi, as usual, was limit- 
ing himself to sixteen pupils. Each prospective student had to 
demonstrate the possession of extraordinary talent before he could 
hope to be accepted, and the boy coveted the honor more than 
anything else. He learned that already twelve others had qualified 
who had influence and were leaving nothing undone in their efforts 
to be chosen. He telephoned Mme Dohnanyi every day and at 
last learned that the teacher had returned. Over the telephone 
Dohnanyi held out little hope and tried to put the boy off by saying 
that perhaps there would be a chance the following year. How- 
ever, Levitzki was insistent and pleaded for a hearing and at 
last an appointment was given him for the next evening after 

When Dohnanyi came out from his dining room the following 

340 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

night, he founcì awaiting him a small boy in knickerbockers. He 
was not only amazed but annoyed. His was the master class, and 
all of his pupils were of maturer years. He had no time for 
beginners as he supposed the child to be. 

"Are you the new student from America," he asked, none too 

"Yes sir," answered the boy whose feet scarcely touched the 
floor when he was seated. 

"Don't you know that we don't admit pupils under sixteen to 
the Hochschule?" began the pianist, and before Levitzki could 
answer he added, "and I personally have never taught children," 
this with a perceptible emphasis on the last word. 

Levitzki was determined not to be dismissed in this summary 
fashion and askecl that he be allowed to play one piece. Dohnanyi 
at length consented and the boy played "La Fileuse" by Raff. 
When he had fìnished, Dohnanyi without other comment asked him 
to play something else. Mendelssohn's "Spring Song" followed. 

"Come tomorrow morning at eleven to the Hochschule for the 
entrance examination," said he, as he gravely bent down and shook 
hands with the boy. 

The next morning Levitzki was confronted with no less than 
fìfteen examiners. 

"What do you want to play?" he was asked. 

"The Mendelssohn Concerto in G minor," was the astounding 

"But that requires an orchestra or at least a second piano for 
accompaniment," answered one of the judges. 

This act of consideration inspired the boy to do his very best. 
When he had finished he was unanimously votecl a member of the 
Dohnanyi's master class. There he spent three years, between 
1911 and 1915. In 1913 the youth received the Mendelssohn sec- 
ond prize, and in 1914 the fìrst. In March of the same year he 
made his Berlin debut, capturing the city, and later during the 
same year played in several Belgian cities. From 1915 to 1916 
Levitzki appeared in Germany once more, then in Austria and 
Norway. At that time Germany was confident of victory, and 
Berlin enjoyed one of the greatest musical seasons in its history. 
The youthful pianist became a great favorite there, but he longed 
to return to America. He made his American dèbut in Aeolian 
Hall in 1916, and immediately established a reputation as a fìnished 
master of the piano, in spite of his extreme youthfulness. 

We have already mentioned the fact that he was soon engaged 
as soloist with America's leading orchestra. Meanwhile, Mischa 
made tours over the country until 1921, when he made a tri- 
umphant tour through Australia and New Zealand, returning to 
America by way of Europe the following season, when he was 



again received with enthusiasm by both audiences and press. "Mr. 
Levitzki is a musician of fìne intimacies, delicacies and reserves," 
said the New York Times. "His style is individually his own, 
as is his technique exceedingly fìnished, unfailing in its correct- 
ness, endless in its minute gradations. His tone is of an exquisite 
purity and opalescence." 

"Levitzki has grown with somewhat confounding quickness 
from the position of an unusually gifted boy to that of a young 
master. The authority with which he plays is impressive," said 
the Neiv Yorlc Sun. The Chìcago Examiner eulogizes Mischa 
Levitzki as follows: "A great fìgure in the pianistic world is 
Mischa Levitzki. He combines something of the authority and 
superlative pianistic mastery of Busoni with more than an echo 
of the romanticism of Paderewski." 

Mischa Levitzki is ingenuous and frank. With him there is 
no suggestion of either pose or pretense. His hair is no longer 
than it would be were he a business man, and he walks to his 
instrument in as matter of f act a way as a banker would approach 
his desk. To make his audience feel the message which the 
composer has written into the music is his mission, and he suc- 
ceeds in such a measure as to efface himself . 

Many a pianist has given a recital from the pulpit platfrom 
of a church in cities which boast no other concert halls, but there 
are few who have been called upon to replace the preacher by 
giving a sermon in harmony. Yet such was the task which was 
set Levitzki by the minister of one of the large New York churches. 

Dr. Christian Reisner, pastor of the Grace Methodist Episcopal 
Church, has the reputation of being a preacher of the simple 
gospel, but he also believes in making use of every honest means 
to draw men to his church. He evidently agrees with the belief 
of Charles Wesley who once said: "The devil ought not to have 
all the best tunes," and so he invited Levitzki to play a short pro- 
gram which included the Gluck-Brahms "Gavotte," a Chopin Bal- 
lade and a Liszt Rhapsody. The effect on the large congregation 
was such that the church rang with applause. 

But this was not all. Levitzki drew something more than 
applause. After he had Jfrnished, Dr. Reisner made an appeal f or 
funds and when the collection plates were emptied the sum 
totalled over $5,000. "And your playing had more to do with 
it than anything I was able to say," he told the pianist afterward. 
"It was a direct response to the message which you gave them. 
They knew that it was something bigger and greater than a mere 
display of technique — that you were there to unfold to them the 
ideas which the composers had concealed within the notes as they 
had arranged them. It was the preaching of the gospel of music 
and beauty and power, just as surely as any words of mine pro- 
claim the gospel of salvation." 

342 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Mischa Levitzki is the composer of a number of small piano 
pieces, in waltz and gavotte form. 

He has three older brothers, the oldest of whom, Dr. Louis 
Levine, is a famous professor of economics and journalist; his 
younger sister, Bertha Levitzki, is a gifted pianist and accom- 
panist. It is worth while mentioning the reason for the dis- 
crepancy in the names of the family scions. The original family 
name was Levitzki, but when the f amily moved to New York f rom 
Russia and were naturalized, they assumed, for some reason of 
their own, the name of Levine. But Mischa uses his original 


A place in the American musical lif e has been quietly and securely 
won by Heniot Levy. As a composer he is well and favorably 
known in America and abroad. Germany and France, as well as 
his native city of Warsaw, Poland, have 
bestowed honors on him. In 1907, in a 
contest of international composers, his 
trio was given highest award by the 
Concours International de la Musique, 
in Paris. As a teacher his gifts gather 
about him a coterie of enthusiastic and 
brilliant young players. 

It is said he was born to the mu- 
sician's life, his father having been a 
composer and teacher. His natural 
gifts were early developed and educated. 
He was born on July 19, 1879, in Warsaw, 
a part of the world which has furnished 
a number of distinguished musicians. He 
is, however, cosmopolitan, for though Polish by birth, he was edu- 
cated in Germany and New York, lived for a time in Norway and 
England, and for the past twelve years has lived in Chicago. 

He studied with Raif and Barth at the Royal High School for 
Music, in Berlin, f rom which place he was graduated in 1897 ; ancl 
composition with Max Bruch at the Master School of the Berlin 
Academy. He made his dèbut with the Philharmonic Orchestra 
in Berlin, in 1898. He then toured through Southern Europe and 
Germany, Norway and Sweden. In a competition in Warsaw, in 
1901, he won first prize for a violin sonata. 

Heniot Levy seems to be the possessor of a dual musical per- 
sonality. He has successfully solved the problem of escaping the 
fossilization process that often overtakes the busy pedagogue, for 
he has remained a valuable concert giver. 



Levy appears frequently in recitals ancl as soloist for sym- 
phony orchestras in Chicago and the surrounding towns. He also 
played in Lonclon and other European cities, meeting with marked 
success. Aside from the prize-winning trio, Levy has written a 
number of works for the piano, among them, "Poème de Mai" and 
"Petite Valse." 


Josep Lhevinne is one of the few representatives of that great 
virtuoso school of piano playing which came into vogue in the 
latter clays of Liszt and Rubinstein, and as such has established 
himself in the realm of pianistic art as a 
supreme master of the instrument. To 
play the piano as Lhevinne does, requires 
a sympathetic unison of mental and phy- 
sical power. 

His style is brilliant and clear, his 
tone and conception replete with poetic 
feeling and imagination. His ease and 
flawless technique have caused him to 
be called Rubinstein's legitimate suc- 

How to become a pianist without a 
piano was the problem that faced Josef 
Lhevinne at the beginning of his career. 
The Lhevinne family lived in a small 
town close to Moscow. There Josef was born in 1874. His father 
was a trumpet player in the Royal Opera, but was too poor to 
indulge in any luxuries, much less a piano. By chance, a brother- 
in-law sent them an old square instrument to keep for him. The 
father put his son through a test to ascertain if he possessed any 
great musical qualifìcations. He was astonished at his talent 
which included an uncannily sense of pitch. 

How to secure instruction was the next problem, for none of 
the family coulcl play the ungainly piece of furniture that had 
been looked upon as a white elephant, but which proved a blessing 
in disguise. Josef knew several conservatory pupils who con- 
sentecl to teach him the elements of playing. At the age of six he 
coulcl sing melodies ancl play the accompaniments to songs of 
Schubert, Schumann, and Mendelssohn. But though Josef loved 
music, and liked to play for fun, he found it so easy to express 
himself freely in music that he did not understand the importance 
of learning or the seriousness of art. He did not like work — a 

344 Famoits Musicians of a WandeHng Race 

disposition that clung to him until he had played before Rubin- 
stein and been inspired by the great master's playing. 

Josef's fìrst teacher was a Swede named Crysander, a student 
at the Conservatory in Moscow. After a short period of study 
with him, Josef conceived the clever idea of giving a concert to 
raise funds for his tuition, but his father opposed such measures 
on the ground that it would be better to wait until he had com- 
pleted his studies. Nevertheless, the boy got his wish through 
peculiar circumstances. A certain colonel who was a friend of 
Josef's teacher had arranged a soirèe in honor of the Grand Duke. 
Through this connection, the youth was chosen to play at the 
function, which was a most brilliant affair, held in the palace and 
attended by the èlite of the city. In spite of his youth, Josef 
was not a bit flustered by the lights, brilliant attire, and court 
ceremony. He performed Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata," and 
the Wagner-Liszt March from "Tanhauser" with such power and 
skill that he deeply impressed the Duke, who then and there ar- 
ranged for a certain banker to take the young artist under his 

When, therefore, the boy was brought to study with SafonofT, 
the director of the Conservatory, he was surprised because he 
taught only master classes and certainly Josef was far from 
ready to take his place there. But Safonoff took a fancy to the 
lad and accepted him because of his great promise, ancl gave him 
daily private lessons for several months so that he might catch up. 
This course was tedious but wise, though it necessitated forsak- 
ing his Liszt, Beethoven, and Chopin for a season of technical 
work. At the end of six years, Josef, then seventeen, was grad- 
uated with the highest honors, even with such stars in the class 
as Rachmaninoff and Scriabin, winning the conservatory gold 
medal and later the Rubinstein prize at Berlin from among thirty- 
two contestants. 

Before his graduation from the conservatory, Josef appeared 
at a concert conducted by Rubinstein, playing Beethoven's "Fifth 

After a period of concert touring throughout Europe, Lhevinne 
became professor of piano at the Imperial Music School in Tiflis, 
and later at the Moscow Conservatory, which post he helcl for 
four years (1902-06). But a year spent in military service proved 
a setback to his work and a serious delay in his musical progress. 

Lhevinne came to America for the fìrst time in 1907. His ap- 
pearance then caused something of a sensation and his visits 
became yearly events till the citbreak of the war, when he was 
interned in Germany. He returned to America in 1919, opening 
his season in New York at the Hippodrome before a vast audience 
with triumphant success. He toured the principal cities of the 



United States, returning to New York City several times for re- 
citals and for appearances as soloist with the leading symphony 
orchestras. Each season since has been devoted by the great 
virtuoso to touring the United States and Mexico. 

When Josef was nineteen years old, he met a young lady, Rosina, 
a little younger than himself at one of the numerous house parties 
of the neighborhood in Moscow, where he lived. Both played the 
piano and became close friends. Rosina went to Safonoif at the 
Conservatory and, like Josef, fìnished the course by winning the 
gold meclal, being the first girl to achieve that honor. She wanted 
to continue her studies and the director advised her to coach with 
Lhevinne. This lecl to a romance, but the formalities required in 
Russia at that time had to be complied with, so they could not 
marry until after his service in the army. After this another tour 
of a year, made necessary by a contract, was fulfìlled. Finally 
the marriage took place, and the couple took up residence in Tiflis, 
where Josef had been engaged as professor in the conservatory. 
Here they spent three years, during which period the plans for 
their joint recitals and his world tour were launched and perfected. 

Josef Lhevinne is a powerfully built, heavy-set man of a kindly 
disposition. His hands are extraordinary, even for a pianist. He 
can reach four keys beyond an octave without elfort and bridges 
with fìrst and fourth fìngers an interval as large as most players 
can do with fìrst and fìfth. His octave-playing is brilliant and 
perfect. His fìngers have natural cushions of unusual size to 
which is partly due his exquisite touch and tone quality. It is a 
powerful forearm that produces the titanic tunes. His mastery of 
the instrument also owes much to his remarkable sense of pitch 
and his powerful imagination. Lhevinne classifies great piano 
playing as a combination of physical material, hearing, tempera- 
ment, ancl imagination. 

While a believer in technique, Josef Lhevinne considers in- 
dividuality the secret of artistic success. "But it must be limited 
by the canons of correct art," he says, "or it is neither artistic 
individuality nor the expression of the artistic. By study and re- 
search that develop mental equipment, by devotion to absolute 
beauty, and a perfect form or art through the inspirational fervor 
that flares up as the soul is fìlled with the fìre of the composer's 
genius, one may hope to attain an individuality of style in inter- 
pretative power that will have warmth as well as symmetry — an 
individuality that will do justice to the composer above all. 

"By intensive study and with a properly focussed aim, any- 
thing within the realm of possibility may be accomplished. Of 
that I am sure, and I am equally sure that not one of us ever 
attains his birth-right, because we are mentally lazy when it comes 
to training the will. 

346 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

"We don't mind spending an hour every day in some gym- 
nasium to put our muscles in prime condition, but who ever heard 
of a mental gymnasium? It is so much easier to wish than to 
will. I became interested in the possibilities of this power we 
possess, but use so little, after an experience on one of my tours. 
A few hours before the concert, a tooth started to jump and 
broadcast pain. I could not fìnd a dentist at that hour, so de- 
termined to play anyway. I said to myself, "Just imagine you like 
it and enjoy the sensation." Strange to say, as the concert pro- 
gressed, the pain seemed to subside. The incident led me to study 
this great force and I found it just a method of practicing life as 
one practices the piano — putting aside a certain portion of the day 
for thinking practice. Thus, in time, one acquires the habit of 
concentration, reasoning, self-perception, and self-control. Tremb- 
ly nerves respond the speediest to this regime. You will soon fìnd 
that you mind yourself, which really means that you are your will, 
and that your mind is only the servant who takes orders. The 
subconscious mind is one of the greatest factors in life and we 
use it the least." 

It was on his second concert tour in Mexico that a remarkable 
scene followed his fìnal concert in Mexico City. On his fìrst ap- 
pearance there, he came unknown, giving his clèbut concert mod- 
estly in a small hall. Before he left, a big theatre was needed to 
accommodate the enthusiasts thronging to hear him. However, 
even this was surpassed on the next visit to Mexico City. The 
Mexicans love music; Lhevinne gave seven concerts in their capital 
before they would part with him. At the fìnal one shouts, cheers, 
pouncling on chairs and the floor with canes, markecl their frantic 
approval. When at last he had no more strength left to play en- 
cores, people f rom the audience followed him outside, unhitched the 
horses from his carriage, ancl drew it themselves to his hotel — a 
token of exuberant enthusiasm usually reserved for a great prima 

A great musician becomes doubly interesting when we know 
more of his personality, and especially of the charm of his home 
life. Josef Lhevinne now lives in a particularly lovely suburb 
near New York. His home is on a hill, overlooking many villas 
and a great sweep of rolling country. The living-room has many 
windows, letting in the sunlight, more an outcloor than an indoor 
room. Lhevinne and his talented pianist wife are not only artists 
in the best sense, but parents in the best sense too. Their two 
children, a boy, Constantine still in his teens, ancl a girl Mariana, 
fìve years old, fìnd that their parents are their best companions in 
sport, tennis, skating, and tobogganing, for which the hill on 
which they live offers a splendid opportunity. The education of 
the children is considered; ancl Mariana, like her brother, speaks 
four languages, English, Russian, French, ancl German. 



Josef Lhevinne and his wife have become intimately associated 
with the musical life of the new continent. They concluct master- 
classes in pianoforte playing in New York City, Chicago, and other 
large centers of the United States. Lhevinne is without a doubt 
one of the outstanding pianists and teachers of our time. 

This celebrated artist does not scorn to play pieces that people 
love because they already know them, but he plays those numbers 
in a way so completely different, searching out fresh beauties and 
giving them new life, that they grow to be delightful novelties. 


George Liebling occupies an outstanding place among those pian- 
ists who bring fame to German music, not only in England and 
the United States, but wherever he appears. 

He was born on January 22, 1865 in 
Berlin. He studied piano under T. Kul- 
lak and F. Liszt, and theory with Hein- 
rich Urban, Wusst, ancì Albert Becker. 
He was a great favorite with all his 
teachers. From his earliest chilcihood 
he was a precocious pianist. Having 
studied as a boy under Kullak, he was 
made, when a pupil of sixteen years, a 
professor of master piano classes. This 
was at Kullak's suggestion. 

He toured the important centers of 
Europe, and won fame as an excellent 
pianist of unsurpassed technique and 
refìned taste. At one time he lived in 
Englancl for a number of years. Queen Victoria was much de- 
lighted by the virtuosity of his playing on August 4, 1908. 

Like Ossip Gabrilowitsch, and Ignaz Friedman, George Liebling 
belongs to that group of f ortunate artists who can play the classics 
and the modernists with equal ease and perfection. 

His interest in playing is a subjective one. He wishes to play 
as a composer felt when he fìrst conceived the music, and not as 
the writer afterwards thought of it. In public performances, he 
follows his impulse, and does not imitate. After public appear- 
ances, he regularly meets friends and chats with them. Liebling 
says it is not until an hour or two later that he can recall faces 
ancl conversations which have taken place. 

Contact with great musicians placed Liebling in an intermedi- 
ary position between the old and new schoòls. He knew Rubin- 
stein, Brahms, Grieg, and Tschaikowsky. Arthur Nikisch, Mar- 

348 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

cella Sembrich, and Emil Sauer were his early friends. He toured 
with Adelina Patti and is acquainted with Siegfried Wagner. His 
personal contacts extended to Busoni and Sgambati, ancl his con- 
temporary acquaintances number Pizzeti, Alfano, Respighi, Au- 
gustini, Hindemith, and many younger .members of the new Euro- 
pean schools. 

As a composer and pianist, he combines the qualities of two 
periods. Indeed, it is his cònviction that all art must incorporate 
both the best belonging to the past and those things which are 
just being recognized. 

In 1890 Liebling was appointed local court pianist in Coburg. 

From 1894 to 1897 he was piano professor in his school in Ber- 
lin, which has won wide renown. In 1898 he was teacher of the 
Guildhall School of Music in London, and in 1908 again opened 
a school of his own in Munich. 

His works for the piano are a distinct contribution to piano 
literature. They include: 

Concerto, opus 22; Pieces: for Piano, Violin and Piano, and 
cello ; Violin Sonatas, opus 28 and 63 ; Songs ; Orchestral works ; the 
opera "The Wager" (1908, Dessau) ; and a mystery, "St. Kath- 
erine" (1908, Cologne), etc. 

On October 11, 1925, at his recital at the Aeolian Hall, New 
York, Liebling played his new piano concerto, "Concerto Eroico," 
which won high praise from critics and audience. The fìrst per- 
formance of the composition in the United States made an event 
of importance, and to this tTie press comments were largely de- 

Olin Downes, music critic of the Neiv York Times, said: "The 
work is written by a mature musician, but one who prefers to 
follow the models of the romantic composers rather than speak in 
the modern idiom . . . Three small pieces also by Mr. Liebling, 
dedicated to Ossip Gabrilowitsch and marked 'new' on the pro- 
gram, served to exhibit another more popular angle of his musical 
fancies." Pitt Sanborn, in the Neio York Telegram of October 
12, said: "The concerto (previously unheard in this country) is 
in the three movements of classical tradition. The music is melo- 
dious, impetuous, romantic in spirit. Mr. Liebling, being a pianist, 
is not ashamed to show his affections for Chopin, and many a 
rhapsodic page breathes ardent devotion to the memory of 'his 
master, Liszt. Needless to say, Mr. Liebling's performance of 
his own music had the authority of authorship, as well as all the 
requisite dash. The orchestral part was on this occasion en- 
trusted to a second piano, presided over by the composer's nephew, 
Leonard Liebling." 

Liebling comes of a family of musicians, several of whom are 
well known in America. His brother Emil became a distinguished 



fìgure in the musical life of Chicago, where he long played the 
piano and taught. 

His nephew, Leonard, is editor of the Musical Courier, New 
York, and his niece, Estelle Liebling, is a notecl singer' and vocal 
teacher, in New York. 


Mme Yolanda Merò, famous Hungarian pianist, was born in 
Budapest, in 1887. Her father, a musician, was her fìrst teacher. 
At the age of fìve, she began to receive training under one of the 
most f amous of Liszt's disciples, Augusta 
Rennebaum at the National Conserv- 
atory. There she remained for eight 

At the age of sixteen she made her 
dèbut in Vienna and was hailed as one 
of the greatest women pianists that city 
had heard since Essipova was at the 
height of her fame. The next few years 
she was traveling from one part of the 
Continent to the other, and fìnally ap- 
peared in London. Her success there 
was one of the sensations of the season. 
The following autumn (1910) she came 
to America. Here she has spent the 
greater part of her time in recent years, not only because America 
found in her a very great pianist and a charming woman, but also 
because she married here. 

Several seasons ago she ventured on a tour of South America 
for the fìrst time. Her success there was equal to that which she 
had enjoyecl in the United States and in Europe. Returning to 
America, she was confronted with a formidable list of engage- 
ments for orchestral appearances and in recitals. She played with 
the Boston Symphony, the New York Symphony, the New York 
Philharmonic, and the Philadelphia, Chicago, Cincinnati, and Min- 
neapolis Symphony Orchestras. 

Yolanda MerÒ is ranked among the foremost interpreters of 
Liszt's music. When she plays his rhapsodies, she is in a sense 
playing her own music, for it belongs to her as it belongs to every- 
one of Hungarian birth. She feels that strange exultation, that 
wild, tempestuous fìre that sets a crowd of Hungarians singing, 
laughing, weeping, shouting and dancing when they are listening 
to this music. What a difference racial feeling may make is well 
illustrated by comparing Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies with 

350 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Brahms' Hungarian Dances. The latter uses much of the same 
material as the former, and yet, beautif ul as they are, how different 
they are! And again, see the difference when a Hungarian plays 
these dances of Brahms, and when they are played by a pianist of 
some other nationality. 

It used to be said of Carreno that her art contained the best 
that came from men, and combined with it the best that can come 
from women. The same comment is made on the part of Merò. 
She has all the strength, fìre, and vigor of the greatest men pian- 
ists, and with it she has the delicacy, grace, and fìneness of the 

Yolanda Merò is now at the peak of her ripened and maturecl 
powers. She has all that tremendous verve and fìery temperament 
which marked her as a most exceptional girl, but the last ten years 
of normal maturing have brought qualities of repose and certain 
intellectual traits which one cannot expect to fìnd in tempestuous 

During the season of 1923-24, Merò appeared as soloist with 
the America's leading symphony orchestras, and the foremost 
conductors as well as in recitals and concerts. Few women pianists 
have elicited so much enthusiasm from public and press as did 
Merò at those appearances, for not even Schumann-Heink has a 
greater gift of reaching out and making enthusiastic personal 
friends who hear her. 

One of the most notable traits in the playing of this great 
Hungarian pianiste is her remarkable command of color, combined 
with the lovely singing tone which she produces from her instru- 
ment. Since she fìrst came to America these characteristics were 
strongly present in her performances, and with passing years they 
have combined to place her among the foremost pianists of our 
time. The pedals are all important in the production of the 
singing .tone and the color, and Yolanda Merò studied them long 
with great profit to herself and to her art. Moreover, the singing 
tone denotes great strength and absolutely perfect command of 
arm and wrist, both of which the artist has in an imusual degree. 
She can strike the keys with the force of a powerful man and the 
next instant can bring forth a singing pianissimo which is almost 
a whisper. Between the two extremes are an infìnite number of 
dynamic degrees cunningly drawn from the strings. 

She has an abiding faith in the classics, and although she 
often includes some representative works in her programs of the 
modern school she declares she finds her greatest pleasure in play- 
ing the older works. 

"I fear I am very old-fashioned when it comes to music," she 
says. "I frankly admit that Debussy and Ravel are about as far 
as I can go with the moderns. What is good and what is not is 



always a matter of taste, subject to constant change. Some of 
the best music that has been producecl in recent years has come 
f rom the pen of American composers. I refer to John Powell and 
Ernest Schelling, both of whom are extraordinarily gifted and 
have composed works of outstanding merit, and like many com- 
posers of the past, will probably receive more recognition in the 
future than they do now." 

Yolanda Merò' is an artist as conservative and quiet in her 
home life as she is tempestuous and revolutionary in her art. 
Certainly no one ever accused this "whirlwind" pianiste, as she 
has been called, of being unoriginal. 

"The musical world needs to be shocked," declares this mu- 
sically unconventional woman. "I even go so far as to say that if 
a musical composition is worth nothing except as an aesthetic shock 
it has value, for a shock every once in a while is essential to awaken 
the dormant intellectuality and emotions of those who have per- 
mitted themselves to be moulded into set forms so far as musical 
appreciation goes." 

It would be difficult to fìnd a person among the "temperamental- 
ly artistic ones" with a more sparkling sense of humor or a keener 
appreciation of the funny side of life than Yolanda Mero. 


BENNO Moiseivitsch calls himself philosophical — a rather unusual 
thing for an artist who has been considered one of the most in- 
dividual pianists of late years. He has little patience with "tem- 
perament." The temperamental artist, 
according to this Russian genius, is 
"spoiled by too sudden or too easy suc- 
cess," which largely accounts for the 
recognized difference between instru- 
mentalists and singers. The latter, says 
Moiseivitsch, "are born with their in- 
strument and seldom have much difficulty 
in learning to use it effectively." It is 
different, however, with instrumental- 
ists. Moiseivitsch belongs to the line of 
'intellectual' pianists. By the exercise 
of the intellect, rather than by spontane- 
ous play or responsive temperament, 
Moiseivitsch seems to apprehend and dis- 
till the particular beauty of voice or mood that the composer 
wished to awaken. As to his technical means, they are the ex- 

352 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ercises of a penetrating, precise, perfecting mind. His tone is 
richly sonorous without a trace of roughness. It is luminous with- 
out a hint of the hardness of an over-crystalline touch. His tone 
achieves both beauty and power, being of many colors and accents, 
yet always in proportion. 

Just how much heredity has to do with musical genius seems 
difflcult to calculate when one learns that Moiseivitsch has eight 
brothers and sisters, only one other of whom showed any particular 
taste for music. 

Benno was born in Odessa, Russia, on February 22, 1890. He 
studied at the Imperial Musical School of his native town, receiv- 
ing the coveted Rubinstein prizes at the age of nine. 

When Benno wa's fourteen years old ne entered the Vienna 
Conservatory, studying under the famous Leschetizky for four 
years. It was not long after his entrance there that he was lookèd 
upon as the best student in the institution. 

Benno is unique in never having been a "boy prodigy." He 
was a regular boy and grew up with as much interest in games 
and playing "hookey" as in music. His artistic growth was sane 
and natural ; at no period was it f orced, nor were his other studies 
neglected because of it. Only when he had reached the age of 
fifteen was a musical career decided upon. Looked at logically, 
this is as it should be, and Moiseivitsch's accomplishments as a 
pianist, certainly prove that an artistic genius need be by no means 
a one-sided individual cut off from all other natural interests and 
broadening influences. Today this young man stands with the 
biggest pianistic talents of modern times, a distinguished musical 
personality and at the same time an engaging, quiet young gentle- 
man, interested in a host of subjects unrelated to his art. 

He made his European dèbut in Town Hall, Reading, England, 
in 1908, and played in London at Queen's Hall in the Spring of 
1909, achieving instantaneous success. In 1919 Moiseivitsch made 
a profound impression at his New York dèbut, and his second 
concert in Carnegie Hall brought the city to his feet. With the 
close of his first tour he had the unusual distinction of being re- 
engaged for a score of concerts the following year. 

Technically, he dazzles ; musically he charms with the very ease 
and clarity of his interpretations. He adds a new touch to every- 
thing, seeing even the coldest and sternest of classics in a fresh 
light and from unexpected and always delightful angles. As he 
himself says, no two interpretations can or should be alike; per- 
formances must refiect the artist's moocl and his ideas, and these 
from a natural human necessity are constantly varying. Just as 
no individual ever feels exactly the same on different days, so 
ought his playing never to be exactly the same on different occa- 
sions. If he attempts to make it so, he is neither true to himself 



nor to the public. This fìdelity to mood is unquestionably a strik- 
ing feature in Moiseivitsch's playing. His individuality is always 
present; he never poses nor invents effects for the sake of causing 
an impression. 

The season following his American dèbut, Moiseivitsch made a 
tour of Australia. It was stated that this Russian was the fìrst 
pianist who had ever arrived unknown and had instantly become 
famous. Of course, reports from America prepared the profes- 
sional circles for unusual performances, but the layman knew 
nothing of the unassuming dark-complexioned pianist until his 
dèbut in Sydney. 

A few days later, however, the name of Moiseivitsch was on 
every music lover's tongue. 

Moiseivitsch's subsequent appearances in the United States 
during the season of 1922-23 were even more sensational than his 

Since his English dèbut, Moiseivitsch has made wide tours 
over New Zealand, Canada, France, Belgium, Austria, and Ger- 
many, aside f rom the United States and Australia. In the United 
States he appears regularly every season since his dèbut and re- 
turn from the Antipodes, and his reputation there is always on 
the increase. "The return of a Russian pianist, Benno Moisei- 
vitsch," said the music editor of the Neiu York Sun, "was heralded 
in Carnegie Hall yesterday afternoon by a large auciience and a 
number of distinguished masters of the keyboard. His tone was 
always translucent, beautifully resonant, and skillfully colored. 
His familiar grasp of rhythm and his fìne sense of melodic line and 
structure were everywhere revealed." 

The extraordinary brilliance of his playing of Bach's "Chro- 
matic Fantasie and Fugue" centered the attention on the per- 
former rather than on the composer, on the same occasion. One 
feared that such high pressure could not be maintained indefi- 
nitely, but it never faltered. Moiseivitsch swept victoriously on. 

Among the modern piano compositions introduced to New York 
by him, was the Tscherenin "Concerto in C sharp minor," which 
he played with the New York Symphony and Philadelphia Orches- 
tra. It is a tremendously diffìcult work, the cadenza alone being 
eighteen pages long. Moiseivitsch also introduced it in England 
when he played it in London with Sir Henry Wood's Orchestra in 
1923. Modern piano literature in general fìnds a ready place in 
his repertoire, but it by no means encroaches upon the territory 
of the classics. He admits that much of the ultra-modern com- 
position f ails to impress him at all ; many of the twentieth century 
writers, he says, seem to compose entirely for effect and not be- 
cause they have something musical to record. In fact, so he be- 
lieves, they are continually attempting to be "smart," to invent 

354 Famous Mtisicians of a Wandering Race 

strange impressions which do not ring true. In Englancl, Moisei- 
vitsch was an enthusiastic member of an artistic organization 
which had as its object the promotion of sane, legitimate art, both 
in music ancl painting, and at its frequent semi-public gatherings, 
the members introduced numerous new works which they thought 
were the results of real inspiration and worthy of serious atten- 
tion. The society, known as "The Fresh Air Society," has done 
much towards exposing and combining the modern trend of bizarre 
and insane art, at the same time encouraging what is genuine 
and beautiful. 


How easily success can be obtainable, how siirmly and unpredict- 
ably good fortune can steal upon a youth anci make a lofty goal 
ancl easy seizure, is illustrated by the career of Mieczyslaw Mùnz, 
gifted pianist. 

Young Mùnz, though still in his twen- 
ties, is one of the most successful claim- 
ants for pianistic honors that has ar- 
rived in the United States in a long time. 
His success has some of the elements of 
a fairy tale, where fate takes no cogniz- 
ance of hardships or obstacles, but makes 
them all serve glamorously toward the 
desired happy end. The stage seems to 
be set for such youths, and all the winds 

Miinz was born in Krakow, Po- 
land, in 1900, and began the study of 
the piano at the age of nine although he 
hacl played by ear ever since he was able to reach the piano. 
Though he appeared occasionally in concerts in Krakow and neigh- 
boring cities, his parents justly decided it would be best for him 
to go through a thorough course of stucly before appearing in the 
great capitals. At fourteen he went to Vienna, working with 
Balewicz at the Vienna Conservatory of Music, and later was 
accepted as a pupil of Busoni. 

Although Mùnz played in concerts in Krakow at the age of 
ten, his formal dèbut was made in Berlin in 1920, when he appeared 
as soloist with the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, on which occasion 
his program was three piano cencertos — Liszt's "A major," 
Brahms' "D minor" and Franck's "Variations Symphoniques." 
Following this performance, he played fìve times in Vienna, twice 



with orchestra and three recitals; two recitals in Rome; and then 
toured throughout Poland and Hungary. In Vienna he played at 
one of the subscription concerts of the Symphony Orchestra, under 

Arriving in the Uni.ted States in 1922 in the proverbial manner 
of European prodigies, full of a volume of praise but with little 
else materially, Miinz found the roadway of conquest, which breaks 
so many, a gay and exciting adventure. He arrived without money 
and without friends, but soon, and all unaccountably to him also, 
he had both money and friends. 

"When I came here," says Mtinz, "I knew nobody, but I went 
around to people and told them I would like to give a concert. 
I had no money but I had very fine criticisms from Europe. I 
just went around and told them I would like to give a concert, and 
everybody was nice to me. That was all there was to it. I did 
not have so many difficulties." 

After playing privately in a few places, a group of New York 
business men arranged a recital for him at Aeolian Hall. He 
played there on the evening of October 22, 1922 and woke up the 
next morning to find himself famous. The newspaper accounts 
were unanimous in their enthusiasm for the playing of the new 
arrival, and the popular acclaim was such that a second recital was 
arranged for shortly afterward which resulted in an engagement 
to appear as soloist with the New York Symphony Orchestra. 

The New York music editor, H. E. Krehbiel, said of his playing 
in the Neiv York Trìbune: "Pianoforte playing of a higher order 
than that disclosed at Aeolian Hall last night will probably be 
heard at some, but not many, recitals and concerts this season. It 
will come from not more than half a dozen men Avho have long 
ago been acclaimed as master musicians as well as virtuosos." 

His second New York recital strengthened his position in the 
musical life of the metropolis, and stamped him as an outstanding 
stellar attraction in the pianistic world. 

In the summer of 1924 the leading impressarios of China, Japan 
and Australia combined to bring him to their shores, and he toured 
those countries with a success which duplicated his American 

In Japan he played seven times at the famous Imperial The- 
atre and played several times in other Japanese and Chinese cities ; 
he was recorded a most unusual reception in the Orient. 

In Australia his fìrst concert was attended by a list of notables 
which included Dame Nellie Melba. He was so enthusiastically 
received by the public there that he played seven recitals in quick 
succession before going on to Melbourne and other cities where 
new triumphs awaited him. 

The author of these lines was present at Munz's recital in 

356 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Carnegie Hall, New York, on October 22, 1926, and at the concert 
of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra uncler Willem Mengel- 
berg, where Miinz played the Brahms "Concerto." On both oc- 
casions he received tumultuous applause. He played the lengthy 
Brahms "Concerto" with breadth and brilliant tone. The noted 
critic Olin Downes, thus described Mtinz's playing, in the New 
York Tìmes of October 23, 1926: 

"The many delightful and sparkling pieces that Domenico 
Scarlatti created for the keyed instruments of his day might well 
be given more attention by modern pianists. Six of his sonatas 
opened the recital of Mieczyslaw Miinz last night at Carnegie 
Hall. They are f ull of melody and liveliness ; the writing has rare 
spontaneity, and an admirable invention of motives and figures 
which anticipate virtuoso effects of today. For these composi- 
tions the clarity and fleetness of execution and the well-sustained 
legato which Mr. Mtinz has at his command served well. The 
pieces were fortunately chosen, from the point of contrast and key- 
color. They were effective, even in the spaces of Carnegie Hall. 

"Mr. Miinz turned from these compositions to that monument 
of nineteenth century romanticism in music, the Schumann C. 
major Fantasie, of which he gave a fiery and genuinely emotional 
perf ormance — 'sempre fantasticamente ed appassionatamente.' 
The composition has everything that is greatest and most poetic in 
Schumann, and very few of his limitations. The artistic stature 
of the piece is so noble and it has such a wide arch that the only 
interpretative boundaries for the pianist are those that reside in 
himself. Miinz played with the enthusiasm of his years, his 
temperament and his virtuoso instinct. 

"His program was fortunately not too long. The maxim that 
too little is better than too much applied. After Scarlatti and Schu- 
mann there were pieces by Labunski, whose Minuet was played for 
the first time here, Medtner, Faure, Chopin. He understands 
the elegance of Faure and is one of the pianists to whom Chopin 
remains a supreme poet of his instrument. 

"A large audience insisted on many encores, and the pianist was 
generous. The concert was thus prolonged into the night." 


Alfred Mirovitch, noted Russian pianist, was born in St. Peters- 
burg (Leningrad) in 1884. He was educated in the gymnasium 
and university of that city, and upon graduation entered the St. 
Petersburg Imperial Conservatory, where he studied for seven 
years under the famous piano pedagogue, Mme Essipova. In 



1909 he was graduated, receiving the gold medal and the Rubin- 
stein prize, in the form of a concert grand piano. 

Then followed successful tours throughout Europe and Rus- 
sia, lasting from 1910 till 1914. The war having interrupted his 
European engagements for 1914 and 1915, he accepted an offer 
from the Orient, where he played almost without interruption for 
five years, visiting Japan, China, Manila, Java, Sumatra, India, 
Australia, New Zealand, Siam, etc. 

Mirovitch made his American dèbut in 1920 and was im- 
mediately engaged as soloist by all the important symphony or- 
chestras. In 1922 he founded the now internationally famous 
Mirovitch Master Classes in Los Angeles, which have since at- 
tracted students and teachers from many countries. 

On February 23, 1926, Mirovitch made his New York reappear- 
ance in Chickering Hall, New York, for a series of three recita^s. 

Mirovitch is also a talented composer. Among the most popu- 
lar of his compositions are: "Minuet," "Spring Song," "Humor- 
esque," "Valse Gracieuse," the first two of which are published for 
piano and orchestra. 


"Leo Ornstein may be ahead of his time. In fact, he may be 
ushering in a new epoch in music ; that he is employing his genius 
towards the attainment of a new musical expression — an expres- 
sion which, perhaps not permanent in 
itself , must play an important role in the 
development of the music of years to 
come. . . His music is color — for that 
is the basis on which he builds." 

These words were said about Orn- 
stein by another Jewish-American com- 
poser, Walter A. Kramer, who is 
perhaps equally important in another 
phase of America's musical art — songs. 

Leo Ornstein to many represents an 
evil musical genius wandering without 
the utmost pale of tonal orthodoxy, in 
a weird No-Man's land haunted by 
tortured souls, wails of futuristic des- 
pair, cubist shrieks and post-impressionistic cries and crashes. He 
is the great anarch, the iconoclast, the destructive genius who 
would root out what little remains of the law and the prophets 
since Scriabine, Stravinsky, and Schonberg trampled them under- 

358 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

An article by this young composer in the The Seven Arts on 
"The Music of New Russia" not alone emphasized this attitude of 
mind, but also threw an interesting light on his own philosophy of 
tone. What he says of Moussorgsky, for instance, might be quite 
as well applied to himself. "The distinctive quality of the new im- 
pulse in art has been the need of expression through direct contact 
with the emotions — a rediscovery and restatement of men's ex- 
periences. Art has torn itself from the admitted routine and hon- 
ored idioms; it has come to realize the inadequacy of conceiving 
modern life according to the old and accepted formulae!" 

And again: "Music has become too fìnished, too mechanically 
perfect. So little has been left to the imagination of the listener 
that he is no longer required to create towards the artist. In all 
epochs of great musical art — the epoch of Bach, the epoch of Cesar 
Pranck, for instance — it was realized that the province of art 
was not to instil a passive pleasure in the listener. Great music 
must wake in us a creative impulse. Unless it does that, it has 
failed to fulfill its destiny." 

Ornstein's music is, in the words of Waldo Frank, "the full- 
throated cry of the young Jew in the young world, background 
of the old passion of storm and repression. But upon it breaks of 
fìre, interstices of flight, America's release. The weight of sor- 
row of the Jew like a loading atmosphere about him. And the 
Jew's intricate response, reasoning and wailing. The birth of 
faith, the tidal energy of faith. New hope, new dream, new life. 
An answer to the lamentation of the Jewish fate is in Ornstein's 
music; a sort of angry joy, lust of a new conquest, Hebrew the 
seed, American the fruit." 

Leo Ornstein was born in Krementschug, Southern Russia, on 
December 11, 1895. His recollections of his early childhood are 
vivid. Krementschug, an important commercial town of nearly 
60,000 inhabitants, is situated on the Dnieper River in a flat, dreary 
countryside, and before the war was the centre of the tallow-trade 
with Warsaw. The Government of Poltava, in which it lies, was 
included within the pale of settlement fìrst established in 1791, by 
which a great Jewish population was held down in a congestion 
which worked terrible destitution and misery, and reduced them 
to a condition of abject poverty and despair. 

Leo was only three years old when he began to study music, 
encouraged and taught by his father, a rabbi, who himself had 
acquired fame as a synagogue cantor when only eighteen. Unlike 
some other children whose musical talent is cleveloped along the 
lines laid down by the originators of patè de fois gras, he was not 
driven to consume ceaseless hours in practice. On the contrary, so 
eager was he to make progress that he would beat his older brother 
with his fìsts in order to drive him from the piano when he thought 



the latter had pre-empted it over-long. When no more than fìve 
he not only played on the piano a Russian folk-song which he had 
heard sung for the first time, but also followed it up with a series 
of improvised variations. Although his fathe'r was opposed to his 
studying music as a profession, his brother-in-law, M. Titiev, a 
violinist, overcame his opposition, and as a result the lad was 
taught the elements and put through a thorough course of scales 
and fìve-fìnger exercises (Kuhlau, Clementi), and the easier com- 
positions of Bach and Handel. 

When Josef Hofmann came to Krementschug in 1902, young 
Ornstein played for him. He was praised, and received a letter, 
recommending him to the St. Petersburg Conservatory. Some time 
later the boy sought out Vladimir Puchalski, played for him, and 
was accepted as a pupil at the Imperial School of Music at Kiev, 
of which Puchalski was the director. 

The death of an aunt, however, interfered with his plans of 
study at Kiev. He was obliged to return to Krementschug and 
work with local teachers. Gabrilowitch, who gàve a concert there 
in 1903, also heard him play, and gave him a letter to Alexander 
Siloti, at the Moscow Conservatory. But the boy had not as yet 
made up his mind defìnitely where and with whom to study. Mere- 
ly to gain self-confìdence (Ornstein, even yet, is far more diffident 
than he is supposed to be), he took an entrance examination for 
the Conservatory of Poltava, but disappeared as soon as he was 
offered a scholarship. Meanwhile, his father had decided for him. 
He was to go to St. Petersburg in 1904. Before he went, he en- 
joyed his fìrst real contact with native music at an old-fashioned 
provincial wedding at which a wealthy merchant celebrated the 
nuptials of his daughter with a week of dancing and festivity. 
Balalaika orchestra and folk-song choruses were a feature of the 
affair and woke that interest in Russian folk-song which has since 
been reflected in the composer's earlier "Russian Suite" for piano, 
the "Russian Impressions" for violin and piano, and, more re- 
cently, in new Russia songs and choruses. At St. Petersburg Leo 
playèd for Alexander Glazounoff, director of the Conservatory, 
ancì was at once accepted as a pupil. At the test he gave un- 
awares an exhibition of his possession of "perfect pitch." 

Ornstein studied piano theory and harmony with Medem 
(though Mme Essipova had expressed a wish to teach him) ; at- 
tended all rehearsals and concerts of the Conservatory orchestra, 
directed by Glazounoff, where he became acquainted with the works 
of Moussorgsky ; f requented the opera, the ballet, concerts, and 
recitals, and drank in music through every pore. His marked tal- 
ent soon made him a favorite of those aristocratic salons of St. 
Petersburg where music was cultivated, and he was spoiled and 
petted to a degree by the music-loving society of the Russian 

360 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

The boy was an eye-witness ancl very nearly a victim of the 
Russian Revolution of 1905. While attending his classes at the 
Conservatory, young Ornstein was earning a living by coaching 
aspiring singers in operatic roles. Thus he came to know much 
of the standard repertory — Aida, Faust, Onegin, Mefistofele, Sam- 
son and Delilah, and others. Before he was twelve years old he 
had begun to devour Tolstoy, Andreyev, Chekhov, as well as 
Shakespeare, Balzac, and other non-Russian classics in transla- 
tion. He was rudely interrupted by the revolutionary cataclysm. 
Leo was' then taken from St. Petersburg to his native city, and 
thence, soon after, the entire family fled to America, arriving in 

On the lower New York East Side, on Attorney Street, Leo 
Ornstein gradually sloughed his Russian skin and became an Am- 
erican boy. He went to school, he practised — for he had no in- 
tention of giving up his music — he played with other boys in the 
block. He attended the Institute of Musical Art, where he had 
been given a scholarship, and also the Friends' Seminary. His 
teachers in theory and harmony at the Institute were Dr. Percy 
Goetschius and R. Huntington Woodman. He was graduated in 
due course. 

A kindly lady, Mrs. Tapper, herself an excellent pianist and 
pedagogue, became exceedingly interested in the boy, and took 
him under her wing. In the Spring of 1910 she took him to 
Europe. This fìrst visit to the Continent was a comparatively brief 
one. From Dresden, where they had stopped, they returned to 
New York, and there the boy gave his fìrst public concert in that 
city at the New Amsterdam Theatre on March 5, 1911. 

Arthur Brisbane, in an editorial in'the Neiv York Evening 
Journal (June 11, 1910) had already spoken prophetically of the 
extraordinary promise displayed by the pianist in a concert given 
by the Institute of Musical Art in Mendelssohn Hall a few days 
before, and paid a deserved tribute of appreciation to this teacher. 
He said in part: "We believe that this boy, providentially saved 
from Russia, brough up in the poverty of a great city, will stand 
with the great musicians of the world." 

In the Summer of 1913, Ornstein once more crossed the ocean 
in company with Mrs. Tapper and went directly to Paris. It was 
here that the sudden and overwhelming projection of Notre Dame 
on his consciousness had such an effect on him that it evoked the 
two "Impressions" which bear that name. Later he went to 
Switzerland, whose scenic beauties inspired him for another set, 
"Quatre Impressions de la Suisse," for four hands. Here he wrote 
a quartet and quintet for strings. 

From Switzerland he went to Vienna, where he first realized 
that, aside from his earlier, more conventional style and his new 



manner, he was in addition the possessor of a third, and began 
the "Vienna Waltz" and "The Night." 

In Berlin, Ornstein made the acquaintance of Ferruccio Busoni, 
whom he admired as "a great intellect in music," and thence went 
to Norway, practising where he could, composing on trains, and 
making his dèbut in Christiania as a concert pianist with a group 
of Chopin pieces and the Liszt E flat major Concerto. He also 
played some of his own newer compositions for the first time, and 
drew from critics the statements that "it was amazing that Mr. 
Ornstein should have decided to play a little joke on the public 
and transfer it from the concert hall to the dental parlor," and 
that he was "a young man temporarily insane." 

From Christiania, Ornstein turned tò Denmark, and in Copen- 
hagen gave the Danish publisher, W. Hansen, his more than con- 
ventionally attractive "Russian Suite" and "Cossack Impressions" 
for piano. He went to Paris to meet Harold Bauer and from 
there he went to England. 

After two recitals Ornstein returned to America and continued 
to work at composition and as a concert pianist, until January, 
1915. It was during January and February of that year that he 
gave the now celebrated series of recitals at the Bandbox Theatre 
in New York, in which he braved conventional program-making 
by presenting four programs made up entirely of ultra-modern 
piano music, his own, and that of others. 

On December 15, 1915, Ornstein gave another New York re- 
cital at the Cort Theatre, and in February, March, and April of 
the same year he gave a series of four "Informal Recitals" in New 
York at the residence of Mrs. Arthur M. Reis. 

The aim of these unconventional programs was to illustrate 
the actual process of divergence by which pianoforte composition 
had moved away from the art forms of the romantic composers 
to find its present contemporary mode of expression. 

The Summers of 1916 and '17, Ornstein spent at Deer Isle, 
Maine, composing, practising, and reading proof on various of 
his compositions in press at the time. His work as a concert 
pianist during the winter of 1916 and the Spring of 1917 may 
be said to have placed him well within the rank of contemporary 
piano virtuosi. 

As a composer Ornstein has often been spoken of as an imitator 
of Schònberg. As a matter of fact, despite surface resemblances, 
the two have little in common. As Ornstein says : "It is but neces- 
sary to compare a page of my music with that of Schònberg to see 
the vast difference between their concepts and methods of ex- 

"Nothing," says Ornstein, "irritates me more than to have a 
composer claim the modernity of his music as a virtue. A state- 

362 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ment of the kind is rank heresy, since the sincere composer does 
not choose a medium — the medium chooses him. He is compelled 
to use it. If I had found it possible to express all that I thought 
and felt diatonically, I should not have had to resort to the 'radi- 
cal' idiom which those who do not understand condemn. When 
a composer feels deeply he cannot convey his feelingsin weak and 
anaemic sentimentalities, draped in all sorts of diatonic reticences, 
but gives them as they are — in all their pathos and poignancy, 
naked and unashamed." 

Ornstein's harmonies are the natural and unalloyed result of 
his unfettered creative impulse, innocent of any preconceived the- 
ory. "When I began to compose," he says, "I had practically not 
been influenced by any current music." For him there exist no 
actual chords or discords. His chord combinations are not the 
conscious reflexion of a defìnite theoretic basis, but the outcome 
of the impulse for a richer, fuller tonal coloring, one which ex- 
tends the possibilities of pure harmony far beyond the limits of 
the diatonic system. 

He never composes 'at the piano.' His whole intricate and 
complete harmonic and rhythmic scheme is developed in his 
mind, and often he dares lose no time in setting it down on paper 
before its outlines grow dim. Many of his compositions are pro- 
grammatic; yet he often hesitates to give them too defìnite a 
title, since "to others my piece may suggest something entirely 
diff erent f rom the picture or mood I had in mind when writing it ; 
and their imaginings may be quite as appropriate ancl legitimate 
as the one I had intended. I am even free to say that I have heard 
certain interpretations of my compositions by other pianists, which 
struck me as being more fìne and effective than my own concep- 
tion of the same pieces." 

Ornstein's "diatonic moments" are not his only lyric ones. He 
has written much music essentially lyric in his later manner: the 
Sonata for violin and piano, opus 26; "The Arabesques" ; the 
"Poems" (1917) ; and the Sonata for 'cello and piano, opus 45. 
"It is when I am in search of softer and gentler color eifects that 
I resort to the use of the diatonic scale," he states. "The vital 
issue is to write music which is sincere, which has in it the germ 
of individual emotional vitality; for after all, emotional comprehen- 
sion is localized within the individual consciousness." 

Ornstein is frank in saying of his "second manner" of musical 
speech: "I honestly fìnd this the most logical and direct idiom 
through which to express my musical impulse, thought, and feel- 
ing. I cannot help contrasting it with one representing a com- 
promise with traditional formulas which often react unfavorably 
on my spontaneity of inspiration. I fìnd that existing tonal idioms 
do not allow me the perfect expression of all that I wish to say 



musically. And I have had to fìnd a language of my own. Yet I 
feel that, once its underlying basis is understood, this language 
will be listened to, and my work will be clear to many who do 
not grasp its meaning now." 

Ornstein is by no means narrow in his musical sympathies. 
His stancl is in keeping with his whole theory that the brother- 
hood of man (at present, alas, so far from being realized!) has an 
analogy in a corresponding brotherhoocl of tone: that there is no 
one tone, no combination of tones but which is related to all others. 
It is merely a question of discovering their connecting ties. To 
quote Ornstein once again : "Perhaps these affìnities cannot be 
mathematically demonstrated ; this does not mean to say that they 
do not exist for there is an inner physical, emotional relationship 
which transcends all others in importance." 

Of course, those who dislike Ornstein, the music he plays, and 
the stir he makes in what should be a tranquil, elderly world, will 
call him insincere. The listener, whose mind is open only to mu- ~~ 
sical thought expressed with positive logical continuity, and in 
accord with certain accepted rules of presentation, cannot grasp 
the vital potency of a mood inspiration whose logic is perfectly 
emotional, which carries away with it the spirit attuned to its 
keynote of absolute abandon of sequential arrangement. But 
those who understand Ornstein's tonal language — and their num- 
ber is increasing — are as enthusiastic in their admiration of his 
accomplishments as his detractors are scornful of its value and 
significance. ~~ 

Ornstein is an experimenter in new forms of musical art. 
and exponent of the modern futuristic movement. Among the 
music-loving public ever alert for the novel and unusual, he has 
created for himself a substantial reputation. 

Charles L. Buchanan speaks of him as possessing "to a large 
extent that indefìnable clairvoyant quality that is present in all 
vital art," yet expresses the fear that Ornstein's music shows ten- 
dencies which seem to him to be dangerously in the direction of 
an exclusive preoccupation with mood at the expense of thought." 
And he puts the question, "Can a substantial, authentic musical 
message proclaim itself through a medium essentially suggestive 
rather than defìnite?" Perhaps the best answer to this question 
has, unconsciously, been given in advance by Paul L. Rosenfeld. 
In discussing the movements entitied "Love," in the piano sonata, 
opus 25, Mr. Rosenfeld says: "It tells its tale: it is silent; and 
while one speculates whether it is music or not, one discovers that 
he has heard real episodes out of the life of the composer, and 
perhaps through him, episodes out of the lives of a whole up- 
growing generation." 

Ornstein's fame and reputation as a piano interpreter, in par- 

364 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

ticular of the great modernists in music, has grown independently 
of his fame as a composer. Of his pianism nothing need be said 
but that he plays superbly, in a manner that leaves no doubt as to 
his position among present-day virtuosi. But he is more than 
that, he is personality. Leo Ornstein at the piano has often been 
limned in picturesque phrase. Huneker wrote: "Yet I do be- 
wail the murderous means of expression with which Leo Orn- 
stein patrolled the piano. He stormed its keys, scooping chunks 
of slag and spouting scoriae like a vicious volcano." He attests: 
"I was stunned, especially after glissandi that ripped up the key- 
board and fizzed and foamed over the stage" — f eeling no doubt, like 
another commentator on whom Ornstein's playing had made "the 
unique impression of a grand piano f rothing at the mouth." 

Of his playing, Ornstein expresses himself in the following 
illuminating manner : "Quite of ten in playing my own pieces I use 
the palm of the hand. But I use it merely as a matter of con- 
venience, since in many cases it would b.e physically out of the 
question for me to play the chord in any other way. And often, I 
secure a heightened brilliancy, which I may desire. Strange to 
say, the body of chord sound produced in this manner is less 
harsh than would be the case if the notes were played with the fìn- 
gers, for in throwing the whole palm of the hand on the keys my 
invariable tendency is to relax." 

"His color sense, his marvelous mastery of touch graduation 
and tonal nuance and shading in playing, his absolute control of the 
pedal possibilities and his successful exploitation of every elusive 
and colorful keyboard means; his singing development of what 
have been termed "the head-tones of the piano," his use of "a 
pressure touch in pianissimo," the glow, the plangency of a piano 
tone whose "long sweep, sustained volume and reverberent climax 
have become more and more supple in the play of ornament, more 
even and transparent in runs, more liquid in arpeggi, more crisp 
in octaves," have been exemplifiecl not alone in the playing of his 

But we will let Ornstein speak for himself with regard to two 
important phases of his technique: "One of the most interesting 
statements I have ever heard anent pianoforte playing was 
Leschetizky's remark to me that 'half a pianist's technique lies in 
the peclals.' It took a long time before I thoroughly unclerstood 
what he meant. It was while experimenting with the music of 
Debussy and Ravel that I fìrst realizecl how impossible it was to 
give a satisf actory performance with the fìngers only. For months 
I labored until I hacl devisecl a system which established absolute 
sympathy between pedal-work and finger-work. And then I found 
that the color possibilities of the instrument were practically limit- 
less. By delicate manipulation of the pedals, I found I could melt 



shade into shade in infinite variation of the dynamic tone-palette. 
But first I had learned to breathe with the music, so to say, to let 
the pedal pulsate with my own emotional perception. It is not 
enough to thrust down the pedal with the foot and change with 
new harmonies. I found that by using half and even a quarter 
of my pedal I could produce the most delicate things. The psy- 
chological moment comes when you strike the key, after having 
prepared your attack by lifting and shutting off the damper. It 
it a very delicate process, and months passed before I had secured 
absolute co-ordination of finger- and foot-work. Relaxation and 
manner of attack also have much to do with a varied tone-produc- 
tion ; yet f undamentally I believe that the preparation of the pedal 
to receive the stroke of the fìnger is the most important factor." 

Ornstein's original compositions for the piano cover a wide 
range of mood and expression of style and type. Among them are 
the numbers of his "first manner," in which the lyric element pre- 
dominates, whose keynote is a certain simplicity of means and 
which, without pretending to the more complex thought content 
or technical elaboration of his later writing, are all in a degree 
touched with an individuality that makes itself felt. 

His "Piano Sonata," a fine, imaginative work, has been rec- 
ognized as one of the significant productions of recent American 

Of more modest proportions, but of undeniable value, are three 
new numbers from his pen, one entitled "Prelude Tragique," and 
two lyric pieces: "Barcarolle" and "Waltz." The "Prelude" is 
conceived, harmonically, in a manner that seems strangely in- 
telligible for a composer who is supposed to think in the most in- 
tricate idiom of the day. As a matter of fact, Ornstein is merely 
concerned about thinking musically, whether it happens to be 
tingecl with modernism or classicisms. He has evidently settled 
down to a genuineness of expression that takes what form it will. 
In other words, he is sincere. 

The "Prelude" has brilliancy and a strong emotional appeal. 
The "Barcarolle" and "Waltz" are in lighter vein, but they ring 
true. They are f ull of color, tender, bright, as their shifting moods 
demand; and too, they have all the Ornstein originality and skill. 
Pianists will miss something of unusual worth if they overlook 
these numbers. 

Ornstein's w'ork presents a notable harvest of inspiration to 
have been gathered by one still so young. Yet youth, intellectually 
ancl emotionally, is sometimes a relative concept — Schubert wrote 
his "Forellen-Quintet" at the age of seventeen. We may be as 
old as our feelings or as young as our thoughts. Mental and emo- 
tional development is not invariably a matter of years, and Orn- 
stein is one of those exceptions which go to prove the general rule. 

366 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In his case youth lends him the fiery energy, the passionate con- 
centration, the intense belief in his aims and ideals wh'ich inform 
the musical maturity of his inspiration with so triumphant an 
accent of sincerity, so eloquent a feeling of truth. His creative 
work is the logical outcome of his ideas, the spontaneous fruition 
of absolute conviction, the irrefutable evidence of his artistic 
honesty, whether or not we accept it, together with the doctrines 
of which it is the outcome, the fact of its existence as the true 
and legitimate musical materalization of definite trends and con- 
sistent ideals in compositions and expression cannot well be gain- 
said. Ornstein possesses in a supreme degree the ability to trans- 
mute into art, by means of a powerful and lucid imagination the 
life of his time. 

During the season of 1925-26 his Second "Piano Concerto" (or- 
iginally written as a sonata for two pianos) was performed by 
the composer, with the Philadelphia Philharmonic Orchestra under 
Stokowski, in Philadelphia, Boston, and other cities. Although 
its thematic material was not new, it was otherwise with the or- 
chestration in which much of the interest of the piece lies. The 
score is by no means without comprehensible plan — it is rich in 
individualistic instrumental devices, informed by imaginative 
virility and a wealth of savage and even brutal beauty. 

Its Slavic flavor is unmistakable, and there are moments when 
the idioms of Stravinsky and Borodin are strongly suggested. 
Much of the work has the flavor of Tartar dances, with somewhat 
the same compelling rhythms that prevail in the once much- 
discussed piano portraits of the "Wild Men." 

Ornstein has been for a number of years, and still is, teaching 
piano at the Philadelphia Academy of Music. 

In conclusion, we may say that Leo Ornstein's activities in 
the field of composition have been sufficiently varied and extensiye 
to develop a technique and a grasp that place him in as dis- 
tinguished a position among composers as that which he enjoys as 
a pianist. 




Vladimir de Pachmann was born in Odessa, Russia, on July 27, 
1848. He first studied under his father, who was professor of 
Roman Law at the Vienna University, and an amateur musician oi 
considerable attainment, for he wrote a 
manual on harmony. Vladimir was the 
youngest of thirteen children. (None of 
his brothers or sisters are living.) Next 
in importance to the great pianist was 
Simon, professor in the Petrograd Uni- 
versity, who died in Russia at the age of 
eighty-seven. Besides being a great 
jurist, Simon was also a musician and a 
clever player on the violin. 

Vladimir exhibited a decided musical 
tendency from earliest childhood, and at 
the age of six began to study the violin 
under the loving tuition of his father. 
But by the time he was ten, he developed 
a strong desire to study the piano, and under the same guidance, 
began to play on the instrument which was to reveal his powerf ul 
genius. One day, when barely twelve years old, his playing of 
Handel's "Double Fugue in C minor" attracted the attention of a 
gentleman who was passing his window. This man, Dr. Morgan, 
wanted to know the name of the able performer of the difficult 
piece. He was greatly astonished to learn that this perfect pianist 
was a child. 

At the age of eighteen, De Pachmann had already given public 
proofs of the talent and skill which had gained the universal admi- 
ration of Odessa. Many among his chief admirers, being aware of 
Vladimir's longing to pursue his musical studies, and that his 
father, burdened with the support of a numerous family, could not 
gratify this longing, decided to make a collection for him. Many 
of the aristocracy contributed, ancl by this means sufficient funds 
were raised to enable Vladimir to enter the Vienna Conservatory, 
where he studied under Dachs and Bruckner. Shortly after his 
arrival in Vienna, he applied to Professor Dachs for admission to 
the higher class of the Conservatory. Dachs pointed out that ac- 
cording to the rules of admission to this grade, pupils were required 
to be goocl musicians and to be able to play the pianoforte. He in- 
vited him to return the following day to afford due proofs of his 

With a punctuality rare among artists, Vladimir hastened the 

368 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

next day to keep his appointment, and assisted at Professor Dachs' 
lesson to his pupils. When the class was dismissed, he was request- 
ed to open his music roll and choose the piece he preferred to play. 
Vladimir replied that he hacl brought no music, but that if the pro- 
f essor woukl name any musical composition he would try to play it 
f rom memory. Dachs, turning a stern and almost reproving glance 
on the youthful Vladimir, objected that the conservatory was no 
place for wasting time, and still less for joking, ending by directing 
him to play whatever he liked, but never to appear again without 
music. Thereupon young De Pachmann seated himself at the piano 
and played Liszt's arrangements of Verdi's "Rigoletto." 

He had no sooner fìnished playing than the wonder-struck pro- 
fessor, bereft of words, ran to call the head of the conservatory, 
Professor Helmesberger. De Pachmann, on turning around, was 
struck with dismay at the professor's disappearance, which in his 
anxious state of mind he attributed to his own f aulty execution of 
the piece. The professor, however, soon returned, accompanied by 
the director himself ; both were loud in their congratulations of De 
Pachmann. They made him play again, to the wondering delight 
of the two teachers. Dachs then requested the youth to prepare 
two studies of Chopin for the following day. Vladimir returned 
punctually, but again without music, and expressed his willingness 
to play the twenty-f our studies of Chopin in any key that might be 
required by the teacher. The professors having seated themselves, 
De Pachmann played as he alone could play Chopin. When the 
divine strains were hushed, Dachs, much affected, embraced him, 
saying : "I have heard this played by Chopin himself ; your playing 
is perhaps better, ancl he could not but be flattered by your perfect 
rendering." It will not be difficult to imagine the enthusiastic 
reception of De Pachmann at the Vienna Conservatory, where he 
remained from 1867 to 1869. Not to study the piano, however, 
Dachs, after a f ew short lessons, having f rankly admitted that the 
pupil, having excelled the teacher, had no further need of his 
lessons. Instead, Vladimir studied harmony and fugues with 
Bruckner, his success being such that at the final trial he was 
awarded the large silver medal. 

On leaving the conservatory young Vladimir returned to Odessa 
where he began to give lessons and also a f ew local concerts which 
excitecl general aclmiration. In 1870, in Oclessa, he first heard 
the f amous Tausig, who impressed him greatly with his technique. 
Tausig urgecl him to still further endeavors. He studied alone 
for eight years. In 1878 he went to Kerson, barely five hours 
distance from Oclessa to give a concert with the pianist Herscheck. 
It was a failure fìnancially, and his aged father was under the 
necessity of proceeding to Kherson to fetch young Vladimir, who 
hacl exhausted his resources. 



On completing his thirtieth year, Vladimir, having lost his 
father, removed with his sister Elizabeth to Leipzig, where under 
the management of Carl Reinecke he gave a concert which won a 
complete success. Leaving somewhat later f or Berlin, the youthf ul 
artist gave a concert in the Architectural Hall which was enthu- 
siastically received and very favorably reviewed. He returned to 
Vienna with the intention of giving a series of concerts. Happen- 
ing one day to be playing a Chopin ballade in Bosendorfer's piano 
repository, he chanced to be overheard by Herr Waldmann, a mu- 
sical connoisseur, who after the fìrst few notes introduced himself 
to De Pachmann ancl in rapturous terms signified his desire to 
organize a series of concerts on his behalf . It may be said, there- 
fore, that his career as a pianist had its beginning f rom that day. 

He played at the Philharmonic Society with enormous success, 
receiving the warmest praise from Professor Hanslick, one of the 
most celebrated musical critics of the time. 

From Paris he proceeded to London, meeting with like success, 
and exciting a warm sympathy which has never to this day failed 
to greet the great artist. In London after one of his concerts he 
formed the acquaintance of a young lady pianist, who became one 
of his pupils, and whom he subsequently married in 1884. Her 
name was Maggie Oakey. 

Full of honors, Vladimir returned to Vienna and then left for 
Budapest, where he became acquainted with Liszt, who expressed 
great friendship and admiration for him. A lady who accompa- 
nied Liszt to one of De Pachmann's concerts, said later that the 
veteran master had declared great admiration for De Pachmann, 
whose execution was such, he added, that he had never been so 
moved before. Liszt and De Pachmann were much together, and 
great was the friendship and admiration of the latter for the aged 

In 1890 Mr. and Mrs. De Pachmann gave a number of concerts 
in Europe and America, visiting the United States for the fìrst 
time in 1892, and were everywhere received with the greatest 
applause. At that time De Pachmann had a house in Paris, where 
it might be said he passed the major part of his married life. His 
wife bore him three children, the first of whom was born and died 
at St. Petersburg; the other two were born in London. One of these 
two surviving sons is now professor of harmony at the Paris Con- 

De Pachmann also visited Italy, but much to the regret of true 
lovers of music, only two towns, Milan and Florence, were favored 
with his visit. Of Florence, especially, De Pachmann retains 
poetic memories. 

Vladimir de Pachmann's playing always excites the greatest 
admiration. His style is so varied that no one ever tires of hearing 

370 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

him; his concerts are crowded to excess wherever a love of 
music prevails. The country in which De Pachmann is best appre- 
ciated and where he no doubt plays with greatest pleasure is Eng- 
land, whose people, while fully alive to the excellence of his pow- 
ers, make every allowance for his eccentricities, cherishing the 
man quite as fully as the artist. De Pachmann, thoroughly realiz- 
ing the sincerity of this admiration, happily mounts his stand to 
address a few words to the public of whose friendly welcome he 
is fully assured. 

De Pachmann is today, as years are counted, an old man. By 
his own confession, made on a multitude of European stages in 
recent seasons, he is nearly eighty years of age. Yet to writers 
in Europe where he has been playing annually there seems no dif- 
ference at all in appearance and playing between De Pachmann 
of 1926 and De Pachmann heard fìfteen or twenty years ago. De 
Pachmann is short, rotund, jovial, with a head of such pictur- 
esqueness as has not been seen on our stages of recent years. His 
playing is still that of one who loves above all else to play the piano. 

He literally makes love to his instrument; he kisses his hand 
to the instrument as he enters the stage. His hands wander over 
its keys in caresses of joy. No lover ever went to his lady with 
greater joy or with a heart so bounding with expectation than De 
Pachmann goes to the pianof orte on which he is to give his immor- 
tal message of beauty. 

Vladimir de Pachmann as an artist links the present with the 
past. He played piano recitals when Liszt was still the living giant 
of the pianoforte. In Cracow, when De Pachmann was a success- 
ful recitalist, he was visited by the student, Paderewski, and his 
advice solicited. One of his earliest tours was made through Ger- 
many in joint recital with Marcella Sembrich. But where the older 
artists have passed and the young have grown to maturity, even in 
some cases also to pass, De Pachmann has continued, a sort of 
eternal phoenix whose life and vigor know not apparently the ordi- 
nary ravages of time. Busoni one time expressed no surprise over 
the report of De Pachmann's continued youthfulness as a pianist. 
The great Italian is reported to have said : "Why should there be 
wonder over De Pachmann's defying age? He has lived for his 
art alone ; theref ore, his art is to him eternally f aithf ul." 

As a master of Chopin, De Pachmann has ever been without a 
rival. The Polish master's works are transfìgured under his fmgers 
by his exceptional temperament and unbridled individuality. To De 
Pachmann, Chopin is a god; his music the emanation of divine 
effulgence. Pachmann approaches a Chopin composition as a 
Catholic goes to St. Peter's in Rome, a Mohammedan to Mecca, a 
Buddhist to the river Ganges. 



The secret of De Pachmann's youthfulness lies, as he himself 
tells all audiences, "in my new methocì." By such technical facility 
does he manage, without fatigue, to play with all the esprit of a 
young man. ln his own words, "Playing the piano never tires me. 
At the end of a recital I feel ready to give another program." The 
number of his encores bears vivid testimony to the truth of such a 

Not so long since, when his managers objected to his giving so 
many additional pieces, De Pachmann begged "to play just one 
more." Being permitted, he went before his audience and played 
an entire Beethoven sonata. 

On his seventy-fìfth birthday, De Pachmann said to his friend, 
"During my three score and fifteen years, I have heard many times 
all the great pianists of the day." (De Pachmann is in the habit of 
talking simultaneously in English, German, French, and Italian.) 
"I have watched them closely. Liszt himself attended my fìrst 
concert in Budapest. He sat in the fìrst row. (After the concert 
we had supper together in my quarters.) At the end of the concert 
he came upon the stage and congratulated me most eff usively, even 
going as f ar as to say : 'I wish that Chopin had heard you play.' 
Later in the day I played his arrangement of 'Auf Fliiglen des 
Gesanges,' and he said with great enthusiasm : 'So I like it !' Liszt 
then playecl his arrangement of Chopin's 'Chant Polonnaise.' It 
was like some wonderful voice singing, for Liszt was transcen- 
dentally the greatest of all pianists. I shall never forget it! He 
played like a gocl! . . . Later I met Liszt at his home in Rome, 
when Richard Wagner was staying with him. I had the honor of 
playing for both of them. I played the Chopin Ballade in G minor 
and was again overwhelmed by the generous praise of both. Liszt 
insisted that I played ìt better than Chopin, who had mannerisms 
in his playing at times." 

De Pachmann lives in a world of his own, and knows no other 
world, no other composers than those who serve his needs, 
no other pianists than those who fulfill his ideals. Worshipping 
beauty in the absolute, he compromises with 110 one, not even with 
himself. "If I should make an ugly tone," he said, "I would shut 
down the piano." Knowing no other law than that of genius, he 
does not hesitate to pass sentence on himself. "Before I discovered 
my new method," he declared, "I played like a pig. Now I play like 
a god." And he proved it. "Come over to the piano," he called, 
"and I will show you what I do. First, I play scales, like this, for 
sixteen minutes every morning. No one can play scales as I do." 
And no one can ! "Then," he continued, "I practice Godowski for 
technique. Every morning I give to Godowsky, and a few octave- 
studies of Joseffy for legato." Here his fìngers melted in some 
octaves. "And now, listen to this, and look at my fìngers. My 
tone is like velvet, Nicht wahr! My fìngering is colossal! Liszt 

372 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

told me that he wished Chopin could hear me; I played his Noc- 
turnes so beautifully. He also told me that not even Rubinstein 
had as beautiful a tone as I. Liszt was then seventy-three, about 
my age now," he added parenthetically, "and I was a young man 
of thirty-four or five. But I can play some of his things now even 
better than he could." 

De Pachmann is universally known f or his eccentricities. He will, 
for instance, stand no interruption in his recital. He has been 
known to grow indignant over late and noisy entrances ; a situation 
he once met by calling a f riend to his sicle and saying, "I will play 
for you. . . . The others are pigs." Again in London, when a late 
arrival peered upon him through her lorgnette, he quite discom- 
fited her and pleased the rest of his audience exceeclingly by mak- 
ing faces at the offender. 

De Pachmann's greatest object of detestation is the 'cello. He 
cannot bear the sound of the violin's big brother, and when through 
piciue or for some other reason, threatens not to appear at a sched- 
uled recital, he has never failed to be won over by his manager's 
telling him, "0, very well, I've an excellent 'cellist who can take 
your place." 

In a recital given in Cambridge, England, in December, 1922, 
De Pachmann played a Chopin Etude. Its end was greetecl with 
loud applause. The pianist held up his hand, quieted the audience, 
and said: 

"None of you knows anything about piano-playing. I really 
played that very badly. Now, I shall play it again, and if I play 
well, I shall tell you." 

He did play the composition a second time. Then kissing his 
own hand with a "Bravo, Pachmann," he asserted: 

"That was truly magnifìcent, Raphaelesque. Now applaud." 
And the audience burst forth into true Pachmann cheers. 

On April 13, 1925, Vladimir de Pachmann gave his farewell 
American all-Chopin recital, in Carnegie Hall, New York. The 
author of this volume still remembers how wonderfully De Pach- 
mann played ! The hall on the occasion was packecl to capacity, the 
stage seats and even standing room having been sold out, and many 
hundreds clamoring for admission turned away. 

De Pachmann will, no doubt, continue to play in Europe and cast 
his spell there as no other living pianist can. It is his dread of the 
ocean voyage that deters him from revisiting our shores. 

Vladimir cle Pachmann played his farewell recital in Carnegie 
Hall before a crowd that overflowed upon the stage in such num- 
bers as to leave barely room for himself and his piano. 

Vlaclimir de Pachmann is the recipient of the Order of Dane- 
brog from the King of Denmark (1885), and the Royal Philhar- 
monic Society's Medal of London, bestowecl upon him in 1916. 

Pianists 373 


PouiSHNOFF comes of an aristocratic Russian family. His people 
were affluent members of Russian society. The boy's aptitude for 
music became evicìent when he was only three years old. He 
always wanteci to "play with" the house- 
hold piano, ancl seemed awe-stricken 
when anybody performed on it. At such 
times he would sit in rapt silence, with 
an expression unusually serious for a 

Mme Essipova-Leschetizky accepted 
him as a pupil, developing his piano 
technique. He studiecl theory and compo- 
sition under the eminent composers Rim- 
sky-Korsakoff, Glazounoff and Liadoff. 
In 1910 he completed his studies at the 
Petrograd Conservatory and was award- 
ed the Gold Medal of that famous insti- 
tute of music. He also won the Rubin- 
stein prize, which carried with it 1,200 rubles for a tour of Europe. 

That year he made his first concert tour with the celebrated 
violinist Professor Leopold Auer, and soon began giving unassisted 
concerts of his own. He played for the first time in Germany in 
1911, winning marked success. Several tours were making him 
famous in that country when the world war broke out. This com- 
pelled him to return to Russia, where from 1914 to 1920 he spent 
most of his time as a professor of piano in the Tiflis (Armenia) 
Conservatory, giving occasional concerts. 

Leaving Russia in 1920, Pouishnoff concertized in Rome, Milan, 
Vienna, Munich, Amsterdam, and The Hague. The London Musical 
Coiirier wrote, regarding his return engagement there: 

"Leff Pouishnoff has returned to England from a continental 
tour which was a series of unchallenged successes. He was the first 
pianist of rank to tour the British broadcasting stations and this 
tour was so successful that he was immediately re-engaged." 

Pouishnoff made his bow before American audiences in 1924, 
in New York City. The following tribute was paid him by the dean 
of America's music critics, W. J. Henderson: 

"This player effected his entry into New York in a quiet and 
unheralcled manner, but by his performances he at once made it 
clear that he is one of the fìnest new pianists heard in this city in 
a long time. . . . No fìner piece of pianistic management of dy- 
namic and tone coloring has been heard in Aeolian Hall in many a 

374 Famous Musicians of a Wanclering Race 

day than Mr. Pouishnoff displayed in the opening passage of the 
concerto. . . . His playing was a widely varied and fìne demonstra- 
tion of rare musical talent admirably developed." 

A tour of the United States f ollowed ; it included Chicago, Day- 
ton, Boston, Cincinnati, St. Louis, and many other large American 

Pouishnoff appeared as soloist with the New York State Sym- 
phony under Casella on February 23, 1926, playing Rachmaninoff's 
Concerto No. 3. In Boston, where Pouishnoff played several times, 
he was likened by the critics in that city to Paderewski and Hof- 
mann. One critic remarked on Pouishnoff's "beautiful tone, al- 
together adequate technique, extraordinary command of nuances, 
keen sense of rhythm and convincing interpretative power." 


Max Rabinowitsch, Russian pianist, was born in Libau, Russia, on 
January 24, 1891. His father was a merchant, and the eleven-year- 
old boy began studying piano with Mme Yazdovskaya, and later 
with Mme Hollatz, a former pupil of Leschetizki. Pursuing his 
academic courses at the same time, Rabinowitsch was graduated 
from the Libau Gymnasium at the age of nineteen, when he entered 
the University of Yuriev, and later of Petrograd. In the latter city 
he attended the Conservatory as well as the University, studying 
piano for three years under Mme Essipova and Barinova, and the- 
ory with Leff Zeitlin and Schteiman. He was graduated from the 
Conservatory in 1913. Three years later he was also graduated 
from the University of Petrograd. 

At the age of fifteen, Rabinowitsch appeared in Riga as soloist 
under Eibenschiitz, playing Mendelssohn's Concerto, and later ap- 
peared under the conductors, Ignaz Newmark, Fitelberg and 
others. He came to America on November 1, 1922, and immediately 
established a reputation as one of the foremost accompanists. In 
the course of his career in that branch of the art he has accompa- 
nied, and also appeared as assisting artist with such celebrities as 
Heifetz, Chaliapin, Smirnoff, Isadora Duncan, Davidoff, Jeritza, 
Hidalgo, Anna Case, and many others. In 1926 he accompanied 
Chaliapin on a tour of Australia. 




A Vienna critic once said that Moritz Rosenthal was a piano trick- 
ster ancl a piano acrobat. He is certainly the greatest piano tech- 
nician living. The attempts of some of his followers to place him 
above Anton Rubinstein are not without 

Moritz Rosenthal was born in De- 
cember of 1862, in Lemberg (Galicia), 
where his father was professor in the 
Chief Academy. From him Rosenthal 
obtained the philosophical turn of mind 
for which he is noted. 

At eight years of age, the boy began 
the study of pianoforte under a certain 
Galeth, whose method was curious in that 
he permitted his pupil absolute freedom 
in sight-reading, transposing, and modu- 
lating, not paying much attention to the 
systematic development of his technique. 
By the time he was nine, the boy manif ested such a love of and a 
determination to learn the piano that he conquered all the difficul- 
ties of Weber's music, with its brilliant passages. 

In 1872 Carl Mikuli, an excellent interpreter and editor of 
Chopin, who was then director of the Lemberg Conservatorium, 
took charge of Rosenthal's education, and within the same year 
played in public with him Chopin's Rondo in C major, for two 

All this time, however, nothing had been determined as to 
Rosenthal's ultimate career, and it was only on the urgent advice 
of Rafael Joseffy that the parents consented to his becoming a 

When in 1875, the family moved to Vienna, Rosenthal became 
a pupil of JosefTy, who set to work systematically to train the boy 
on Tausig's method. The results were astonishing, since Rosen- 
thal played at his fìrst public recital in 1876 Beethoven's thirty-two 
variations, Chopin's F minor concerto and some Liszt and Mendels- 

There promptly followed a tour through Roumania, where at 
Bucharest the king created the fourteen-year-old lad Court-pianist. 
In the next year Liszt came into Rosenthal's life, and henceforth, 
until the master's death, played a great part therein. In 1878 and 
subsequently, they were together in Weimar, Rome, Budapest, and 
Vienna. Rosenthal then appeared as Liszt's pupil in Paris, St. 
Petersburg, and elsewhere. 

376 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Meanwhile, the philosophical studies were by no means neg- 
lected by him, for in 1880 Rosenthal qualified at the Staats Gym- 
nasium in Vienna for the philosophical course at the University 
where he studied with Zimmerman, Brentano and Hanslick (musi- 
cal aesthetes). Six years elapsed before he resumed public piano- 
forte playing. Then there followed in quick succession, after a 
triumph in the Liszt-Verein at Leipzig, a long series of concert- 
tours in America and elsewhere, which brought him ultimately to 
England in 1895 and to America again later, where in the Spring 
of 1907 he made a remarkably successful tour. 

Rosenthal, like Hofmann and Paderewski, owes his universal 
fame to America where, beginning in 1887, he gave a long succes- 
sion of brilliant concerts. 

He was considered a rare phenomenon in the field of piano tech- 
nique. This reputation for unrivaled technical mastery spread 
over the world. However, his playing always wakes the highest 
admiration, not on account of the perfect technique alone, but 
because of the deep expressiveness of the pianist. 

"Seldom has there been heard in San Francisco a pianist of 
greater technical gifts," said the San Francisco Bulletin, "or of 
more virile power. It is, of course, as a technician that Rosenthal 
has been known. But added to this was also so much sincerity, in- 
tellectuality and beauty as to make of the performance a truly dis- 
tinguished memory. ,, 

Rather short, heavy set, with dark skin, quick brown eyes, and 
thin dark hair, Moritz Rosenthal is the type of personality whose 
presence is always felt. He is quick in his motions, and his short 
stubby hands are never still ; yet he is by no means a nervous type 
and has none of the languishing, dreaming mannerisms which some 
associate with musicians. 

Rosenthal is also a writer. His style is crisp, caustic, and con- 
vincing. He has had numerous battles with critics and has gener- 
ally come out the victor. He has contributed to many prominent 
reviews, and in collaboration with Ludvig Schytte, the Danish 
composer, has written a book on the technique of the piano which 
has been translated into nearly every living language. 

It is said that no man has ever been so f ast and yet so accurate 
in the transmission of thought from his active mind to the sensi- 
tive muscles of his fìnger tips. Columbia University professors 
who examined him to ascertain the length of time for a thought to 
pass from his mind into action on the piano keyboard, found that 
Rosenthal was phenomenal in that it took less time f or the thoughts 
to pass down his head, the length of his arms and into his fingers 
than could be gaged by the stop-watches of the professors. 

Few artists evoke such superlative praise from critics as does 
Rosenthal. "He radiated and glittered and chiseled fìlmy fìligrees 



and thundered exciting fortissimos. His utterance has softened 
and mellowed. A marvelously sustained legato and endless shades 
of color are his. And he no longer makes the impression of resist- 
ing tender sentiment with an overplus of masculinity. He reaches 
for the hearts of his listeners." Leonard Liebling wrote these words 
in the Neio York American on December 15, 1923. 

Though in the last seventeen years there have been many pian- 
ists heard in New York, distinguished for many things, there have 
been few, even among the younger generation, who could equal him. 

Having missed the great triumvirate, Liszt-Chopin-Rubinstein, 
the pianists of the younger generation must learn from him who 
has had the privilege to study with these pianistic and musical 


The name of Rubinstein has stood for greatness in the music world 
for many years. Beryl Rubinstein, American pianist and composer, 
proves himself worthy of the name. It would seem that he has 
been sent into the world for the purpose 
of playing everything that was ever writ- 
ten fòr the piano, for he seems to possess 
a natural technical equipment that re- 
joices in difficulties. 

Beryl Rubinstein was born in Athens, 
Georgia. His father discovered his tal- 
ent at the age of six and taught him until 
he was twelve. During these years he 
toured the country, appearing as an inf ant 
prodigy. At thirteen, under the tutelage 
of Alexander Lambert, he appeared at 
the Metropolitan Opera House. Follow- 
ing this he went to Europe, studying 
under Da Motta in Berlin, and being a 
frequent visitor at the home of Busoni. He studied composition 
under May-Kenost. As a mature artist he made his New York 
dèbut in 1916, following which he made many recital tours of the 
United States. He appeared in numerous joint programs with 
Ysaye and also played with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra 
under Stransky, and with other leading orchestras. He also toured 
as assistant pianist with the Duncan dancers. 

Beryl Rubinstein has composed works for the piano, voice and 
violin which have been published. His recent works include a 
sonata for piano, which was performed in New York two years ago, 
and a concerto for piano and orchestra, which had its prèmiere 

378 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

with the Detroit Symphony at the program of all-American works 
that was given in February of 1926, on which occasion Rubinstein 
appeared as soloist. He is at present engaged in teaching, being a 
member of the piano faculty of the Cleveland Institute of Musical 
Art (formerly under Ernest Bloch). 

Beryl Rubinstein belongs to the elect among pianists, for he 
possesses dexterity, power, and imagination to a high degree. He 
plays beautifully and with a singing tone. 


Nicholai Rubinstein, the younger brother of Anton Rubinstein, 
was born on June 2, 1835, in Moscow, whither his parents had 
moved from Bessarabia, and established for himself a place as an 
outstanding pianist and social worker. 
Although his f ame never reached the pro- 
portions of his immortal brother's, it 
would nevertheless be unjust not to give 
full value to his useful activities. 

From his very earliest years Nicholai 
Rubinstein manifested unusual talent. 
At five he possessed technique on the 
piano and composed small pieces. His 
fìrst teacher was his mother; later he 
studied under Gehel. In 1844 his mother 
took her two sons, Anton and Nicholai, 
to Berlin, where Nicholai began to study 
piano with Kullak, and theory and com- 
position with Dan. In 1846 the mother 
and Nicholai moved back to Moscow, where he continued his studies 
with the pianist Willman. 

In 1856 Nicholai Rubinstein went to study law and mathematics 
at the Moscow University, but he gave most of his attention to his 
playing and won great renown as a pianist. According to the 
opinion of his countrymen, he was a great pianist, like his brother 
Anton. During his annual concerts in St. Petersburg, Nicholai, like 
his brother Anton in St. Petersburg some years before. 

A great part of his social activities was performed in 1860, when 
he established a branch of the Russian Music Society, founded by 
his brother Anton in St. Petersburg some years before. 

In 1866 he established the Moscow Conservatory, of which he 
was director and piano teacher until his death. He not only under- 
took the directorship and professorship of the Conservatory, but 
conducted the symphony concerts at the same time, and was known 
as an excellent conductor. 



In 1868 he gave a series of Russian concerts at the World's Fair 
in Paris ancl gained tremendous success. Aside from these activi- 
ties he made a number of concert tours over Europe, and it is note- 
worthy that many concerts were given by him for the benefit of 
his poor colleagues. 

Nicholai also played a great role in the lif e of Tschaikowsky and 
aided him in his activities as composer. 

He died in the flower of his life, at the age of forty-six, on 
March 23, 1881, in Paris. 

Leopold Auer, friend and associate of Nicholai, says the follow- 
ing of him in My Lonrj Life in Musìc: 

"Nicholai Rubinstein was a genuine artist, and showed himself 
most encouraging and admirable to every unknown young colleague 
whom chance had thrown in his way. There was nothing about 
Nicholai Rubinstein's personality which recalled his brother Anton, 
unless it was his hands — hands which were enormous — and his 
great thick fingers, each fìnger-end upholstered on its inner side 
with a veritable cushion of flesh. He was gay and cheerful. Nicho- 
lai, like his brother Anton, was very generous by nature, and re- 
garded money merely as a convenience for giving pleasure to others 
and to himself . . . . 

"Nicholai Rubinstein often came to St. Petersburg, where he 
gave annual concerts, though since he was director of the Music 
Conservatory and conductor of the Russian Symphony concerts in 
that city, besides teaching his own special piano class, he was con- 
tinually engrossed with the administrative affairs which brought 
him to the head of the Imperial Russian Musical Society in the 
capital. He was young, jovial, generous, but in him were united 
the most opposite traits of character, f or in his office at the Conser- 
vatory, on the concluctor's stand, and at the piano he was the seri- 
ous and most capable artist, like his brother Anton. He was an ex- 
ceptional musician as well as a master pianist. Anton was always 
full of admiration for his great talent, and often remarked that 
Nicholai was the better pianist of the two — and vice versa. There 
was never a hint of jealousy between them, and to tell the truth, 
there was no occasion for it." 

Regarding Nicholai's death, Auer continues : : 

"A year after Anton had died, I went to Moscow to attend the 
funeral of Nicholai Rubinstein, the news of whose death had horri- 
fìed me in Paris. Some months before, stricken with a serious mal- 
ady, he had fought it with all his strength. He could not be ill, he 
saicl ; he had no time f or illness. Yet in the end he was obliged to 
give up the unequal struggle. The devotion of f riends made it pos- 
sible for him to be brought to Paris to consult some of the most 
famous physicians there, but there was nothing to be done for 
him, and he died after several weeks of suffering. 

380 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

"All Russia was grieving profoundly and Moscow went into 
deep mourning. The streets through which the funeral procession 
passed — it was on a bright sunny morning — were closed to traffic, 
and everywhere lamps were burning behind thick walls of crèpe. 
Hundreds of carriages and thousands of pedestrians followed the 
hearse, which was hidden by flowers. When the inventory of his 
estate was made, it was discovered that while Nicholai Rubinstein 
had lived like a prince, he had died in the poverty which is the lot 
of the majority of musicians." 

Many of Nicholai Rubinstein's pupils became famous pianists. 
Like his brother Anton, he was continually given honors ancl 


Music is a thing of lights and shades, of moods and emotions. and 
Nadia Reisenberg is one of the few young pianists whose playing 
reflects the underlying thoughts and feelings of the great com- 
posers. Technically she is nearly fault- 
less, but what fìrst-class pianist is not, in 
these days of great virtuosity? 

Paderewski attencled her dèbut to 
hear her play his Polish Fantasy anc't 
described her playing as "exceedingly 
beautiful." Joseph Hofmann has de- 
scribed her as "charming and talented" ; 
De Pachmann has expressed his "admira- 
tion for her pianistic talent"; Mischa 
Elman has praised her for "her great 
talent and beautiful playing." 

Nadia Reisenberg was born in Russia 
on July 14, 1904. She studied the piano 
at the Imperial Conservatory of St. Pe- 
terburg under Leonid Nikolaiev. After the Revolution she left the 
land of her birth, ancl following an extensive concert tour in Poland, 
Latvia, Lithuania, and Germany, came to America. In New York 
she became an artist pupil of Alexancler Lambert. 

Nadia Reisenberg has given several recitals in New York City, 
and has appeared with great success as soloist with the New York 
Symphony Orchestra under the clirection of Walter Damrosch, and 
with other prominent organizations, including the City Symphony 
Orchestra, the League of Composers, and the Society of the Friencls 
of Music, of New York, under Arthur Bodanzky. 




"The illustrious Anton himself," said Herman Devries of the Chi- 
cago Evening America, "could surely not surpass the talents, the 
accomplishments, let me say, the genius of this young giant of the 
keyboard. Like his predecessor, Anton, Arthur plays the piano by 
no rule or formula, but according to the dictates of his own inspira- 
tion. He has never devoted his time to the fìnger exercises gener- 
ally deemed necessary for a mastery of the keys, but he works out 
each composition by an instinctive grasp of its potential effects. 

This insight has endeared Arthur Rubinstein to many living 
composers, some of whom, including Stravinsky, have written 
works for his special interpretation, with the understanding that 
none else shall perform them for a period of years. In spite of his 
neglect of those exercises, Arthur Rubinstein is nevertheless de- 
clarjed to be a sterling virtuoso, who combines great technical skill 
wfth refìned musical qualities, an innate instinct for accent, and a 
sense of beauty in tone coloring and with a personality which in- 
stantly grips the attention of his audiences. 

Rubinstein is self-taught to a large extent. His only teacher, 
when a child, was R. M. Breithaupt of Berlin. Rubinstein devotes 
the bulk of his attention to the works of his contemporaries. 

He was born in Lodz, Russian-Poland, on January 28, 1886,. 
At the age of seven he made his first public appearance in Warsaw, 
and has since made many extensive tours in Europe and America. 

He is an intimate f riend of Paul Kochanski, the celebrated vio- 
linist, with whom he has made many concert tours, particularly in 
Spain and South America. 


David Saperton, eminent American pianist and pedagogue, at 
present one of the chief instructors of the famous Curtis Institute 
of Music in Philadelphia, was born on October 29, 1889, in Pitts- 
burgh, Pennsylvania. He is the son of the physician Nahum Lenn 
Saperstein and his wife, Nathalie (nèe Michalowski) . Prior to 
becoming a physician, his father was a well-known basso and 
teacher of singing, and his grandfather was a tenor and famous 

Saperton studied music with his f ather and later with Joseph Git- 
tings in Pittsburgh and August Spanuth in New York. Theory and 
composition he studied with Hugo Kaun in Berlin. Saperton played 
the Mendelssohn Concerto with orchestra at the age of ten, in Car- 

382 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

negie Hall, Pittsburgh ; his New York dèbut he made in Mendels- 
sohn Hall in 1905. He also played at the Metropolitan Opera House 
during the same year, and subsequently appeared in joint recitals 
with Geraldine Farrar, Rita Sachetto, and other famous artists. 
Saperton is a truly musical nature, endowed with unusual talent. 
He is now one of the most acknowledged piano teachers not only in 
Philadelphia but also in New York. On his many tours through 
Europe, Saperton was honored at many European courts. He gave 
a concert series in New York from January to March, 1914, and 
another in January of 1915, playing on six successive days several 
Busoni transcriptions and Karol Szymanowski's Sonata (opus 21). 
Saperton is married to the daughter of Leopold Godowsky. 


Harold Samuel, the distinguished English pianist, who has won 
great success the world over with his incomparable interpretations 
of Bach's music, comes of a distinguished musical family. His 
father's uncle was a well-known singing 
teacher and composer, and a great f riend 
of Lord Byron. On his mother's side 
Samuel is descended from a well-known 
Baltimore family. He was born in Lon- 
don, May 23, 1879. 

Samuel has played the piano as long 
as he can remember. He learned the 
notes from his sister in one lesson, and 
then had a rapid succession of other 
teachers. At one time he planned to study 
with Theodore Leschetizki in Vienna, but 
his health broke down and he had to re- 
turn to England. He received the bulk 
of his piano training from Edward 
Dannreuther of London (a brother of Gustav Dannreuther of New 
York)- It was he who inspired Samuel with his interest in Bach. 
Before going to the Royal College, Samuel studied for a short time 
with Albeniz, Schònberger, and Michael Hamburger. After grad- 
uation from the Royal College, Samuel gave his fìrst public recital 
at the age of twenty-one in Steinway Hall, London. After an 
absence of several years, during which he devoted himself to theory 
and composition, as well studying Bach exclusively, he returned in 
1919 to the concert stage, giving the same program (the thirty 
variations) that he had given in his fìrst public recital. It was an 
outstanding success. He was hailed immediately as one of the 



great pianists of England. In 1921 Samuel attemptecl something 
which had never been tried before; he gave six recitals in six suc- 
cessive days, devoting them entirely to the music of Bach, playing 
all of them by memory, and never once repeating — not even in 
encores — a single composition. The risky venture proved an enor- 
mous success, and he has repeated it many times, not only in Lon- 
don, where it is now an annual affair, but throughout England and 
in New York. 

In the Autumn of 1924, Samuel paid his fìrst visit to America, 
coming at the invitation of Mrs. Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge to 
play at the Berkshire Festival. He intended to give only two re- 
citals in that country, both in New York, but his success was so 
extraordinary that he also gave one in Boston. He appeared with 
the Beethoven Association in New York and was engaged to play at 
Yale, Bryn Mawr, and Vassar Colleges before returning to Eng- 
land. Few artists have ever received such universal and unquali- 
fìed endorsement. All the New York critics and the concert public 
insisted on hearing him. 

From the leading orchestras came requests for his appearances, 
but he had to return to Europe, where he was engaged for a tour of 
Belgium, Spain, Holland, and Germany. His tour of the United 
States during the season of 1925-26 was an answer to numerous 

Samuel is almost the only one among pianists to have as great 
resources in phrasing as a violinist has perfect command of the 
bow. So his audience has the easiest time imaginable. It requires 
no conscious elfort of concentration to listen. One is carried along, 
marveling at the beauty of each dance tune in the "Partita Suite," 
compelled to the enjoyment of the argument of each fugue, and sur- 
prised afresh, however well one knows them, by the way in which 
the "Preludes" forecast the romantic period. 

It is hard to recall any other pianist indeed, even among the 
greatest, who makes Bach quite so winning, so human, so convinc- 
ingly beautiful. The academic face of Bach glows with warmth 
and humor as Samuel elucidates this or that cunning little bit of 
counterpoint or obstinately repeated sequence which the old master 
has employed with obviously playful purpose. 

Samuel's programs should be of particular interest to music stu- 
dents, for his programs are of rare intelligence and scope. 

He is the recipient of many signal honors, and is on the piano- 
teaching staff of the London Royal College of Music. 

384 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Raoe 


Emil Sauer is one of the greatest pianists of our time. His indi- 
viduality is almost as well defìned and as fascinating as that of 
Paderewski or Hofmann, and his technique is marvelously perfect. 

This man with the sympathetic face 
has everything necessary for the pianist. 
Dignity, breadth and depth are evident. 
He has temperament enough f or ten play- 
ers, but wonderfully controlled. 

Emil Sauer was born on October 8, 
1862, in Hamburg. His mother (nèe 
Gordon), who was from Scotland, was 
his fìrst teacher in piano. But Anton 
Rubinstein heard him play when quite 
young, and recommended his being sent 
to his brother Nicholai Rubinstein at the 
Moscow Conservatory, where he re- 
mained for two years (1879-81). Later, 
he made the acquaintance of Liszt, who 
became his f riend and counsellor, and with him he studied at Wei- 
mar (1884-85). He paid his fìrst visit to London in 1894, and his 
fìrst appearance in America was made in New York in 1899. 

In the course of his extensive tours he has received a great 
number of tokens of royal and official appreciation. In all, he is a 
member of over twenty orders, including the French Legion of 
Honor. As a composer, Sauer, like Chopin, has devoted himself 
almost exclusively to the piano. The most outstanding of his com- 
positions are two piano concertos, two piano sonatas, twenty-four 
etudes for piano, and also songs. 


David Schor, pianist, was born in Simpheropol, Russia, in 1867. 
He studied at the St. Petersburg Conservatory with Amenda, Van 
Ark, and later at the Moscow Conservatory with Safonoff. 

Schor has become famous through the Moscow Trio, which he 
organizecì with Alexander Krein (violinist) and Modest Altschuler 
('cellist). This organization gave many concerts throughout the 
Russian empire and in Europe. 

He is now living in Tel Aviv, Palestine. 

Pianists 385 


Arthur Schnabel, the eminent pianist, composer, and pedagogue, 
was born in Lipnik, Checko-Slovakia, on April 17, 1882. At the 
age of six he was a piano pupil of the f amous Hans Schmitt, known 
to all piano students for his numerous 
exercises for the piano. In 1888 the boy 
was placed under Leschetizky in Vienna, 
where among his fellow-students were 
Ossip Gabrilowitsch and Mark Hamburg. 
He was graduated from these classes in 
1897. During those years Schnabel de- 
voted himself to a virtuoso's career, spe- 
cializing particularly in the music of 

Few contemporary pianists have suc- 
ceeded so thoroughly in substantially es- 
tablishing themselves with the musical 
publics of Europe and America as has 
Arthur Schnabel. He appeared repeat- 
edly as soloist with the world's leading orchestras, under such mas- 
ters of the baton as the late Artur Nikisch, Weingartner, Mengel- 
berg, and many others. His interpretations of Brahms and Bee- 
thoven are considered superb examples of their order. 

Schnabel has also devoted considerable attention to the study of 
theory, pursuing his courses under the famous musicologist, Euse- 
bius Mandgzcewski. He has composed a string quartet, a dance 
suite for piano, a sonata for violin alone, and numerous other 

As a composer, Schnabel belongs to the Expressionistic School. 
Together with Carl Flesch, Schnabel edited Mozart's violin sonatas 
for the Peters Edition. With Flesch and Hugo Becker, he organ- 
ized the famous trio, which toured all over Europe. 

He had taught on previous occasions, but from 1919 has de- 
voted himself almost exclusively to teaching. Many of the younger 
generations of celebrated pianists are his pupils. 

Schnabel has an erudite and highly cultured personality. Kind 
and genial, he is the beloved and esteemed friend of most con- 
temporary great musicians. Brahms was one of his admirers, as 
well as the late Anton Rubinstein, of whom Schnabel cherishes 
the fondest memories. 

386 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Although of Austrian parentage, Germaine Schnitzer, the cele- 
brated Viennese pianist, was born on May 28, 1888, in Paris, where 
she began her musical training at the age of six. At eight she coulcl 
transpose Bach and others by sight. She 
went to the Paris Conservatorie, where 
Marmontel and Raoul Pugno took charge 
of her studies. Later she moved to Vi- 
enna and studied with Emil Sauer. 

She soon appeared in public and 
everywhere was acclaimed as an unus- 
ually gifted pianist. Both press and au- 
diences were not slow to realize that they 
were making the acquaintance of a talent 
of the fìrst order. 

Her fìrst American dèbut was made 
at Chickering Hall, Boston, on December 
13, 1906. Her success was enormous. 
Musical America of December 22, 1906, 
wrote: "Miss Schnitzer is a musician in the narrow meaning of 
the word ; she is also a poet. That she is the f ormer was revealed 
at once in her admirable reading of Bach's prelude and fugue, 
while in her playing of the 'Carnaval' she was romantically poetic. 
The capriciousness, the whimsicality, the tenderness, the brilliance, 
the dreaminess of Schumann's music were expressed with the spon- 
taneity of an improvisor." 

The New York Journal wrote: "To say that she achieved suc- 
cess is to put it mildly. Hers was a blazing triumph, a complete 
conquest. This girl is without question the greatest and most im- 
portant new voice in pianoforte playing that has sounded upon 
us for a decade at least." 

Five days after her successful dèbut in Boston, Germaine 
Schnitzer made her fìrst appearance in New York, at Mendelssohn 
Hall. It is of interest to quote a few press comments: 

The New York Tribune said : "She came without the loud 
trumpetings which usually herald foreign artists or those of native 
birth who have gone abroad for a foreign hallmark, and her success 
was for that reason all the more emphatic and convincing." 

"She has a superb tone, big, sonorous, rich, and wide in range," 
said the critic of the Neiv York Sun. 

The New York World wrote: "In addition to her brilliant tech- 
nique she commands a singing tone, and a virile one, which has a 
certain admirable nobility." 



After this she returned to Europe to fulfill her engagements 
there, appearing in recitals, as soloist with many of Europe's lead- 
ing orchestras and with prominent chamber-music organizations. 

Her second reappearance in New York was made on Thursday, 
January 14, 1909, as a soloist with the Russian Symphony Orches- 
tra under Modest Altschuler at Carnegie Hall. She played the 
"Ukrainian Rhapsodie" by Liapunoff, rose to the technical de- 
mands and extraordinary power, and gave a most perfect perform- 
ance of the work. 

On January 30 of the same year she played Schumann's A minor 
Concerto with the New York Philharmonic under Safonoff at Car- 
negie Hall, New York. 

A noted critic said : "Germaine Schnitzer played the Schu- 
mann Concerto with breadth, authority and musical appreciation 
of its beauty." 

Since that time Mme Schnitzer has become a favorite of both 
continents. She has played with practically all the leading or- 
chestras and under the most famous conductors. She played six 
times with the New York Philharmonic, three times with the New 
York Symphony, fìve times with the Boston Symphony, twice with 
the Chicago Symphony, three times with the Cincinnati Symphony, 
twice each with the Detroit, St. Louis, Los Angeles, and San Fran- 
cisco Orchestras, the Pasedeloup and Colonne Concerts in Paris, the 
Berlin Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic, the Vienna Kon- 
zertverein, the Vienna Tonkiinstler Orchestra, Warsaw Philhar- 
monic, Stockholm Konzertverein, Budapest, Christiana and Bergen 
Philharmonic, etc. This shows how popular she is. 

Germaine Schnitzer at present occupies a prominent position 
and is one of the most interesting among the celebrated interpret- 
ers of pianoforte literature. 

Technically, she has splendid assets, fìnely developed finger 
velocity and pleasing tone qualities, especially in pianissimo pas- 
sages, in which she uses a delightfully feathery touch. 


Karol Szreter, the Polish pianist, is one of the new stars that 
have arisen on the new musical horizon. He was born on Septem- 
ber 29, 1898, in Lodz, Poland. He took his fìrst lesson at the age 
of seven, his fìrst teacher being Wachtel. His first appearance 
was held in Warsaw, in 1909. From 1912 to 1914 he studied at 
the St. Petersburg Conservatory, under Professor Dubassoff; and 
from 1914 to 1918 under Professor Petrie. He made his Berlin 
dèbut in 1915, and has concertized in Germany, Holland, the Scan- 
dinavian countries, Italy, Poland, Roumania, and Cheko-Slovakia. 

388 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

He is the possessor of a brilliant technique. His tone is noble. 

During the past few seasons, Szreter also toured as accom- 
panist to Franz von Veesey, the famous violinist; Arnold Fòldesy, 
the 'cello virtuoso, and other celebrities. 


Educated at the University of Warsaw, Alexander Sklarevski, the 
eminent pianist, first studied piano privately. He later entered the 
Conservatory of St. Petersburg, where he was graduated in 1908, 
his teacher being Mme. Benno. At his 
graduation he was given the gold medal 
for musical profìciency. 

Sklarevski then went to Paris to be- 
gin concertizing, but just as he was about 
to set out, the Russian government of- 
fered him the post of professor at the 
then newly founded Conservatory at 
Saratov, which he accepted. He finally 
became director of that Conservatory. 

With the coming of the great war, 
Sklarevski was prevented from return- 
ing to Paris, and so left Russia for Amer- 
ica in the Autumn of 1918, intending to 
appear there in concert on his arrival. 
But again he was unable to do what he had intended. The Spanish 
influenza was then raging, and his concert plans were so affected 
by it that he lef t Vancouver for the Orient. There he gave a series 
of more than 100 concerts in Japan, China, the Philippines, Singa- 
pore, the French and Dutch Indies, and Java. He made a sensation 
in these places, his performances being considered the greatest 
pianistic exhibition ever heard in those remote parts. 

On his return to America in 1919, he gave a concert at Van- 
couver, where he was hailed as one of the greatest piano virtuosi 
of our day. 

Sklarevski made his dèbut in New York City on March 18, 1920, 
at the Aeolian Hall, and was received with much f avor by press and 

Pianists 389 


Karl Tausig was a Jew from Polancl, whose Jews were very bit- 
terly denounced by Wagner, chiefly because the orthodox among 
them wear beards and gaberdines. Nevertheless, it was Tausig 
who devised the plan by which 300,000 
thalers were raised for the building of 
Wagner's Bayreuth Theatre. 

On a level with Liszt, Rosenthal, An- 
ton Rubinstein, Hofmann, and Paderew- 
ski, Tausig was one of the greatest tech- 
nicians on the piano, and one of the 
greatest interpreters ever known. Un- 
fortunately, Tausig's life was short, like 
that of Schubert's and Mozart's. He died 
at the age of thirty. But in this short 
span he succeeded in reaching great 
heights. It can be said without exaggera- 
tion that as a virtuoso he stood second to 
no one of his generation, Tausig's tech- 
nique was perfect, in a class by itself. By technique we mean not 
that nimbleness of fìngers that conquers clifficulties, but the art of 
producing elegantly and purely each separate tone. In this art 
there is something marvelous, something the mind cannot perceive. 
Great was Liszt's respect for Tausig. He once said about him: 
"Being considered one of my best pupils, he exceeded me by the 
soulfulness and warmth of his playing. He possesses a great in- 
nate musical talent." 

Karl Tausig was born on November 4, 1841 in Warsaw. Till 
the age of fourteen he studied with his father, Alois Tausig, an 
excellent pianist and teacher, and a pupil of Berkley and Thalberg. 

The years 1859 to 1860 Tausig spent in Dresden, after which 
he lived for two years in Vienna, where he made a furore not only 
by his piano playing, but as a conductor of the most complicated or- 
chestral compositions of Liszt, Wagner, and Berlioz. In 1865 
Tausig, on the invitation of his friend Hans von Bulow, went to 
Berlin, where he received the title of Court-pianist and founded a 
high-school for piano playing, which he however f orsook in the Fall 
of 1870. Among his numerous pupils who afterwards became f am- 
ous was the pianist Sophia Menter, who was called by Anton 
Rubinstein the "queen of all keyboards and hearts." 

During the last years of his life even the most sensational suc- 
cesses did not make Tausig happy. He became a wretched, melan- 
choly individual. This change in him some try to explain by his 

390 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

unfortunate marriage to the pianist Wrabelli, from whom he soon 
parted; others attribute this change to his deep philosophical 
meditations and speculations. 

Tausig died on July 17, 1871, in spite of the vigilant care of 
Countess von Krakow. Countess Kukhanova Nesselrode, pianist 
and friend of Richard Wagner, visited Tausig during the last week 
of his life, endeavoring to convert him to Christianity, but the 
patient did not respond. 

As a teacher Tausig exercised a great influence on the younger 
generation of pianists. Of the compositions he wrote, only a few 
have been published; but his piano arrangements of Wagner's 
operas, Clementi's "Gradus ad Parnassum" and his own famous 
"Deux Etudes de Concert" present a degree of refìnement and bril- 
liance hardly rivaled in contemporary piano literàture. 


Isabella Wengerova, noted pianist and pedagogue, was born in. 
Vilna in 1879. At the age of five she performed on the piano in 
public. Her fìrst teacher was Goldenweiser (pupil of Mojesko, in 
Odessa) ; at fourteen, the girl entered 
the Vienna Conservatory, studying there 
under Professor Dachs (teacher of De 
Pachmann) for three years, and from 
1896 to 1900 with Leschetizki. 

In 1905 Wengerova was engaged by 
the St. Petersburg Conservatory to take 
the place of the famous Mme Essipova. 
Two years later she was made a Pro- 
fessor at the Conservatory and kept the 
post until 1921, when she came to New 
York to establish her own piano studio 

Wengerova's father, Afanasy, was 
the director of the Minsk Bank. Her 
mother, Paulina, published a book at the age of seventy, under the 
title of The Memiors of a Babuschka. Isabella is not the only 
musical celebrity in her family; her brother Vladimir is a gifted 
celhst, being a pupil of Zeiffert in St. Petersburg. Isabella's 
brother Semyon was professor of literature, critic, and writer 
while her sister Zinaida is a writer of repute and critic of foreign 
Jiterature in Russia, 

Pianists 391 


Tiie praise of fellow artists is arcìently desired by all artists. 
To Sara Sokolsky-Freid, this has been accorded in generous meas- 
ure for her brilliant achievements as pianist and organist. Rafael 
Joseffy called her "a remarkable talent" ; 
Vincent d'Indy declares that she "pos- 
sesses an absolutely sure technique and 
I consider her a brilliant virtuoso" ; ancl 
according to Maurice Moszkowski "she 
is remarkably talented and can be rated 
an artist of high attainments." 

Sara Sokolsky-Freid was born at 
Korytki, Poland, on April 7, 1896. She 
received her education in the public 
schools of New York City. Rusotto was 
her fìrst teacher in music; later she 
studied composition with Eugene Bern- 
stein, Marie de Levenoff, Raphael Joseffy 
and Guenther Kiesewetter; organ at the 
Royal Academy of Music, in Germany, under Corbach and Ludwig; 
and the history of music at the Sorbonne University under Romain 
Rolland, and also Moritz Moszkowski. 

Her dèbut occurred in April of 1909, at the Mendelssohn Hall, 
New York. The next fìve years saw extensive concertizing in 
Europe, which included appearances as soloist with philharmonic 
orchestras in Berlin, Paris and Vienna. 

Since 1916 Sara Sokolsky-Freid has devoted herself to con- 
certizing and teaching in the United States. Many artist pupils 
of hers are now prominent in the concert fìeld. She is a contrib- 
utor to many art publications. 

Of her playing, the Neiv York Evening Post said: "Mrs. 
Sokolsky-Freid proved herself an organist of almost Saint- 
Saensian stature, yet her touch on the piano was good, too . . . 
She played like a born musician, with intelligence and feeling, 
being indeed at her best in the one number on her programme 
which was the most diffìcult — not to play but to interpret. Her 
reading of Beethoven's sonata, opus 111, was most engaging." 



Max Bloch is one of the bright lights of the New York Metro- 
politan galaxy. Ple possesses a lyric tenor of extraordinary sonor- 
ity ancl beauty. Born in Germany about forty-fìve years ago, he 
studied there uncler Mrs. Keva Pockal, 
an American lacly f rom St. Louis. Bloch 
obtainecl his fìrst engagement with the 
Komische Opera in Berlin, under the 
management of Hans Gregor. From 
there he went to the Kunstwerke Opera, 
in the same city, and for more stage ex- 
perience, he accepted an engagement at 
the Municipal Theatre for one season. 
This was followed by another season in 
the German metropolis, after which he 
was engaged by the Metropolitan Opera 
Company of New York. 

He was engaged for the Summer sea- 
son of 1926 with the Colonne Theatre in 
Buenos Ayres, where his success was pronouncecì. 


Sophie Braslau is one of fortune's favorites. She has reached a 
foremost position among the great singers of the world and is 
counted as one of the fìnest artists on the stage. She has succeeded 
in opera and in concert, having "arrived" 
at an age when most singers are still in 
the midst of their studies. A serious 
student in her art, untiring in her efforts 
to advance, she has mastered the singing 
of songs and their interpretation as few 
singers have at the end of a long career. 
The possessor of a beautif ul voice, a con- 
tralto of rare quality, she is equally for- 
tunate in her personality. She is beauti- 
f ul and has a stage presence of charm and 
dignity. She seems to radiate wholesome- 
ness, sanity, right thinking and right do- 

Sophie Braslau does not, like many 
great singers, merely sing beautifully: her voice gives every deli- 

396 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

cate shade of emotion and poetic value. In this she is like Chalia- 
pin, Ruffo, and Bori. With their voices alone they are able to give 
us the emotions and the dreams of the composer even as Pavlova 
interprets them with her exquisite body. 

She sings with perfect diction, in addition to her native Eng- 
lish, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian, and Hebrew, some 
of her songs in ancient Hebrew and modern Jewish being among 
the most remarkable things she does. 

Having a voice of uncommon range and flexibility, her musical 
repertory is much more comprehensive than that of most singers. 
Although her voice is a true alto in its lower register of the true 
diapason quality which one always hopes to hear and so seldom 
does,it carries easily to high B flat, and the entire literature of the 
mezzo-soprano is within its range. 

One of the most distinguished successes that Sophie Braslau 
has had in her brilliant career was the performance of the title- 
role of Bizet's "Carmen" at Ravinia Park in Chicago. The part 
was written for a mezzo-soprano and its tessitura is high, so that 
it says much for the wide range of Braslau's voice that she was able 
to sing it without any difliculty whatsoever. On the contrary, she 
sang it with consummate ease and gave the music a warmth and 
glow of color which only a rich voice such as hers can impart. Her 
singing, for instance, of the "Habanera" always stirs an audience 
to great enthusiasm. 

When the King of Belgium was visiting New York in 1920, it 
was Sophie Braslau who was chosen to greet him with her songs. 

Pitts Sanborn, one of New York's chief critics, regards her as 
"one of the exceptional singers of our day." W. J. Henderson 
characterized her voice as "one of the most beautiful voices now 
before the public." 

The Braslau tone quality is exceedingly pleasing, pure, and 
robust, and projected as only the seasoned concert artist can pro- 
ject it. 

The only child of Dr. Abel and Alexandra Braslau (nèe 
Goodelman), who emigrated to America many years ago, Sophie, 
who was born on August 16, 1892, in New York City, of Russian 
parentage, received her general education in the public schools of 
New York, at the Wadleigh High School, and from private tutors. 
She started her musical work at the age of six, devoting herself to 
the piano. It was not until several years later that she began her 
vocal studies. In 1910 she took voice lessons with Buzzi-Peccia, 
studying for three years with him. Since 1913 she studied with 
Gabriele Sibella. That same year she made her dèbut with the 
Metropolitan Opera Company when she played the role of Feodor 
in "Boris Godounoff" (with Didur as Boris), following which she 
appeared in leading contralto roles, creating the role of "Shane- 
wis" in 1918, at the premiere of Cadman's opera. 



Her concert dèbut was made in 1913, when at short notice she 
replaced Mme Homer as soloist of the Richmond Festival, imme- 
diately gaining recognition f or her splendid singing. 

Following this introduction, she has appeared in concert and 
recital throughout the United States, being heard with such leading 
organizations as the Boston Symphony, the Philadelphia, the New 
York, and Cincinnati Symphonies, and many others, as well as at 
the important festivals, including the Worcester, Ann Arbor, and 
Cincinnati festivals. 

She fìnally decided to devote herself to concert-recitals and ap- 
pearances with symphony orchestras. 


One never knows when the Muse is going to touch one on the 
shoulder and show one how one should go. Giuseppe Campanari, 
the great baritone, began his musical career as a 'cellist, as did 
Toscanini and Campanini, the greatest 
Italian conductors. Charles Dalmores, 
the eminent French tenor, jumped from 
obscurity to prominence by forsaking the 
French horn and 'cello. 

It is perhaps not generally known 
that this illustrious tenor began his mu- 
sical life as a student of the violin, 'cello 
and French horn. When he was twenty- 
three years of age he became a professor 
at the Conservatoire at Lyons, where he 
gave lessons on the violin and French 
horn. "When I was teaching," he says, 
"I considered myself rich if I made two 
dollars a day. It is to M. Dauphin, the 
celebrated basso, that I owe my position today. He had sung at 
Covent Garden for fìf teen years, and had heard me singing snatches 
of music to my pupils. He pointed out a new road to me." 

Charles Dalmores was born in Nancy, France, on January 1, 
1872. His musical instruction commenced at the age of six. He 
studied first at the Conservatoire at Nancy, intending to make a 
specialty of the violin. For a time he also studied the 'cello and 
managed to acquire a very creditable technique upon that instru- 

Then he had the misfortune of breaking one of his arms. It 
was then he decided that it would be better to study another in- 

398 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

strument. Ple chose the French horn. This he did with much suc- 
cess. At the age of fourteen he already 
played second horn in a theatre at Nancy. 
With the financial help of some citizens 
of his native town, he entered the Con- 
servatoire at Paris, where he studied 
very hard and succeeded in winning the 
fìrst prize for playing the French horn. 
For a time he played under Colonne, and 
from 1878 to 1894 he played in Paris 
with Lamoreux Orchestra. 

All this time he had his heart set 
upon becoming a singer, but the very 
mention of the fact that he desired to 
become a singer was met with ridicule by 
his friends, who evidently thought that 
it was a form of fanaticism. 

Notwithstanding the success he met with his instruments, he 
was confronted with the fact that he had before him the life of a 
poor musician. His salary was low, and there were few, if any, 
opportunities to make extra money, outside of his regular work 
with the orchestra. 

In his military service he played in the band of an infantry 
regiment, and when he told his companions and friends that he 
aspired to be a great singer some day, they greeted his declaration 
with howls of laughter, and pointed out the fact that he was already 
along in years and had an established profession. 

At the age of twenty-three he found himself appointed Pro- 
fessor of the French horn at the Conservatory of Lyons. 

It is of interest to mention that Dalmores tried a few times to 
enter the classes for singing at Paris. His voice was apparently 
liked, but he was refused admission upon the basis that he was too 
good a musician to waste his time in becoming an inferior singer. 

"Goodness gracious!" he exclaimed in an interview. "Where 
is musicianship needed more than in the case of a singer? This 
amused me, and I resolved to bide my time." 

Where there is a will, there is usually a way. He devised all • 
sorts of "home-made" exercises to improve his voice as he thought 
best. He listened to singers and tried to get the best points from 

"I played in opera orchestras whenever I had a chance, and 
thus became acquainted with the famous roles. One eye was on 
the music and the other was on the stage. During the rests I 
dreamed of the time when I might become a singer like those over 
the footlights." 

Gradually, if unconsciously, he was paving the way for the great 



opportunity of his life. It came in the form of an experienced 
teacher, Dauphin, who had been a basso for ten years at the lead- 
ing theatre of Belgium, fourteen years in London, ancl later direc- 
tor at Geneva and Lyons. He also received the appointment of 
Professor at the Lyons Conservatory. 

"One day," he says, "Dauphin heard me singing and inquired 
who I was. Then he came in my room and said to me, 'How much 
clo you get here for teaching ancl playing?" I proudly replied, 
'Six thousand francs a year.' Then he said, 'You shall study with 
me arid some day you shall earn as much as six thousand francs a 
month/ " 

Dalmores coulcl hardly believe that the opportunity he had 
waited for so long had come! 

Dauphin had him come to his house, where he gave him lessons 
free of charge. 

Besides studying with Dauphin he also studied in opera reper- 
toire with Franz Emerich in Berlin. He was also a prize pupil of 
the Paris Conservatoire, where, as it is known, he was at fìrst 
refused aclmission to the singing classes. They found that he was 
"too good a musician to waste his time becoming a mediocre 

During the fìrst Winter he studied no less than six operas. 
During the second, he mastered one opera each month, and at the 
same time clicl all his regular work, studying ancl improving his 
voice, disregarding the foolish remarks of his pessimistic advisers. 

"I sang in a church and also sang in a synagogue to keep up my 
income," he says. "All the time I had to put up with the sarcasm 
of my colleagues, who seemed to think, like many others, that the 
calling of the singer was one demanding little musicianship, and 
tried to make me see that in giving up the French horn and pro- 
fessorship at the Conservatoire I would be abandoning a dignifìed 
career f or that of a species of musicianship which at that time was 
not supposed to demand any special musical training. 

"I, however, determined to become a different kind of a singer. 
I had a feeling that the more good music I knew the better would 
be my work in opera. I wish that all singers could see this. Many 
singers live in a little world all of their own. They know the music 
of the footlights, but there their experience encls. Every symphony 
I have played has been molded into my life experience in such a 
way that it cannot help being reflected in my work." 

After long and hard stucly, he fìnally made his successful dèbut 
as a singer in Rouen, in 1899. Later he sang at the Thèatre de la 
Monnaie, Brussels, Covent Garden, etc. His American dèbut he 
made in 1906 at the Manhattan Opera House, under Oscar Ham- 
merstein, when that theatre was opened. There he remained till 
1911, after which he went for several seasons to the Chicago Grand 
Opera Company. 

400 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

On January 3, 1908, he sang Julien in "Louise" at the Man- 
hattan Opera House, New York. One critic said: "Dalmores' 
voice was frequently of compelling beauty. The French tenor was 
in good form and, especially in his dramatic singing of the Aria, 
proved himself well adapted, both vocally and temperamentally." 

Another critic said: "His 'Julien' is of individual, complete 
and powerful characterization." 

Of all music, that which most appeals to Dalmores is Wag- 
ner's. He says it is the most difficult, but also the most superb. 
But of all he loved to sing was Julien in Charpentier's "Louise" 
perhaps dearest to his heart because it could not but bring back the 
old, passed happy days when he and Charpentier were together. 

Charles Dalmores is regarded as one of the most distin- 
guished tenors now living. His reputation is widespread, for he 
has excited admiration in Bayreuth, Vienna, Paris, Italy, the United 
States and most of the chief cities of Europe. His voice is a noble 
organ, manly, tender, and always sympathetic. He sings with 
great skill and always as a musician, and he is an accomplished 
and impressive actor. 


During the Bayreuth Festivals in 1899 a young baritone of the Im- 
perial Vienna Opera, Leopold Demuth, attracted wide attention. 
He sang with extraordinary success Hans Sachs in the "Meister- 
singer," and the himter in the last part of the "Niebelungen Ring." 
The beauty and resonance of his voice charmed all connoisseurs 
and lovers of singing. 

Leopold Demuth was born on November 2, 1861, in Briinn, 
Czechoslovakia. He received his musical education under Pro- 
fessor Hensbacher in Vienna, and tried his luck for the fìrst time 
at the Halle City Theatre, and at the Queen's Opera in Berlin. In 
1891 he was engaged by the Leipzig Stadttheater, where he soon 
showed himself in f ull glory. From Leipzig, Demuth went to Ham- 
burg, where he soon established a reputation as a fìrst-rate artist 
by his singing of "Wolfram," in which he made his dèbut there on 
September 1, 1896. 

His playing in "Der Fliegende Hollaender," "Kurwenal," "Graf 
Almaviva," "Don Juan," "Rigoletto," and others, were masterly 
creations of their kind. Gustav Mahler immediately engaged him 
for the Vienna opera when he first heard him. There he made a 
colossal success, and soon became Vienna's favorite singer. He 
died on March 4, 1910, in Bernowitz. 




Ellen Dalossy is a young soprano f rom Prague. She comes f rom 
the land which gave birth to Maria Jeritza and Emmy Destinn. 
As a member of the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York, 
she has sung many roles with success 
and is considered a most valuable mem- 
ber. She is also an excellent linguist, 
speaking most of the dialects of Central 
Europe, besides French, Italian, and Ger- 
man. Her musical training was with the 
best masters in both Berlin and Milan. 
For several years she studied with Nicho- 
las Rothmiihl in Berlin. At fifteen she 
made her dèbut in "Haensel and Gretel," 
after which she sang in many parts of 
Germany and Austria, from where she 
went again to Milan to study with Sibella. 

Dalossy came to America in 1917 
for the German production of "May- 
time," in which she made such a success that the Shuberts 
(famous theatrical managers) made her a most flattering 
offer. She refused it in order to join the Metropolitan Opera 
Company. She was cast to create an important part in the 
operatic version of "The Blue Bird." Since the revival in 1921 
of "Boris Godounoff" with Chaliapin, Miss Dalossy has sung the 
role of the Princess in that opera with great charm and feeling. 

Ellen Dalossy is one of the most promising of the younger sing- 
ers of today, one who can look f orward with confidence to a brilliant 


Selma Kurz, one of the most outstanding coloratura sopranos of 
the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, was born in Bic- 
litz, Silesia. 

A great fìgure in her day, she made her dèbut at the Frankf urt- 
on-Main Opera House. Subsequently, she sang with great success 
in all the large centers of Europe and America. At the Vienna 
Hofoper she sang under Gustave Mahler, whose special favorite 
she was, and who contributed làrgely to her great advance and 

402 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


A NEW name to the concert stage but one already prominent at the 
Metropolitan Opera House of New York is that of Nanette Guil- 
ford, the young American soprano who attained eminence at the 
age at which many singers have not yet 
made their dèbut. At the opera house, 
she is called the "baby." Nanette was 
only eighteen when she joined that cele- 
brated organization, but she has already 
had triumphs which many a more experi- 
enced artist might be glad to claim. Her 
career shatters the old tradition that 
great singers must be made in Europe, 
for Guilford is wholly American in birth 
and training. 

The young soprano was born in New 

York City in 1906, and was educated 
there, principally under private tutors. 
Piano playing and a fluent command of 
b rench, German, Italian, and Spanish were some of her early ac- 
complishments which stood her in good stead as it became evident 
that she was to be a singer. Her voice is a heritage from her 
mother, and she is the fìrst in her family to appear in public on the 

Her voice won recognition when she sang at a war benefìt, and 
she was engaged immediately, at the age of sixteen, for a musical 
production. The young artist's goal, however, was the Metropoli- 
tan Opera House, and she abandoned the fìeld of light music in 
order to prepare herself for the opportunity which was soon to 
come. With this purpose, she undertook serious study under the 
guidance of Albert Clark Jeannote, and with him studied for two 
years. An audition was then arranged for her at the Metropolitan, 
and a contract f ollowed shortly afterwards. Like most young sing- 
ers, Guilford had a start with minor roles, but it was not long be- 
fore she was singing such important parts as Musetta in "La Bo- 
heme/[ Micaela in "Carmen," and Olga in Giordano's "Fedora." 

Guilford's voice is a treasure emphatically worth possessing, 
and her use of it is skillful and artistic. It is a rich soprano of 
great range, and capable of all manner of tonal coloring. As an 
interpreter of song she is versatile and accomplished, and whatever 
that indispensable and indefìnable quality of "personality" is, Guil- 
ford has it in abundance. She is not only a beautif ul young woman, 
but her charm communicates itself easily and naturally to her 



During the season of 1925, Guilford was heard as Juliette in 
Gounod's "Romeo et Juliette," and as Nora Burke in Perollo's "La 
Veglia," which she sang at a performanee given privately for the 
Manufacturers' Trust Company. She made her concert dèbut in 
New York on February 10, 1925, in the Town Hall, when she was 
assisted at the piano by Giuseppe Bamboschek, conductor of the 
Metropolitan. She was also heard in Boston on March 16, 1926, 
as soloist with Vannini's Symphony Ensemble at a concert given 
under the auspices of the Boston Athletic Association. 

She won a triumph as the star of "Cena del Beffe," produced 
in New York at the Metropolitan Opera House in 1925. 

"I much prefer tragic roles to coquettish ones," she says. "I 
am never so happy as I am when I am sad, portraying the Micaela 
or Juliette. Perhaps it is because my life has always been so full of 
joy that I must fìnd an outlet for emotions never experienced. 
Perhaps I read too many morbid Russian novels or Schopenhauer 

ancl Nietzsche. But such harrowing literature cloes not affect my 

life in any manner. I go on being jolly and carefree. It is only 
when the blue footlights cast their reflection over me and it is my 
turn to break the stillness of the audience with a melancholy aria 
that my pessimistic reading, on the fringe of my consciousness, 
comes to the fore and aids me in a sincere expression of tragedy." 

Her favorite role is Manon, because it involves such a mixture 
of confiicting characteristics, variety of moods and strange blend 
of love and wickedness. "It is fun to play being wicked," she con- 
fesses, "and I sometimes think I should like to help Micaela win 
back her lover's affections. As you see, I have a dreadful imagina- 
tion and sense of the dramatic." American drama is her chief 
delight, next to the opera. "I have never been abroad to study and 
I am proud of it," she says. "I was born in New York and have 
lived there all my life, and ever since I was six years old I have 
been going regularly to the theater. I used to think I could watch 
it grow, and several years ago when Eugene O'Neil came to the 
f ore I waxed very eloquent in my youthf ul praises." 

Most of Guilford's spare time has been spent in studying Ger- 
man, as her aim is to enlarge her repertoire to include leading roles 
in Wagnerian music dramas. 

Walking through New York's famous Central Park on a warm 
sunny day, one may pass this golden-haired girl who dwells as a 
soul apart. "Only once in a while I get into a mood of solitude," 
says Nanette. "I am not chronically 'the melancholy Jacques.' 
When I walk and philosophize I really do it because it tickles my 
vanity. One part of me always stands a little distance away and 

Miss Guilf ord, already at the peak of her career, will probably 
remain there or rise even higher, due to her intelligence, ambition, 
and the modesty so necessary in a young artist. 

404 Famous Musìcians of a Wandering Race 


Alma Gluck is one of the most succesesf ul of the newer school of 
American singers. She made her dèbut in New York City at the 
New Theater in 1909 as Sophie in "Werther." The story of her 
rise to celebrity is most interesting. 

Alma Gluck was born in Bucharest, 
Roumania, in 1886, and came with her 
parents to New York when a small child. 
Her maiden name was Reba Fierson, 
and she is said to have been employed as 
a stenographer in the office of a young 
lawyer in New York previous to her mar- 
riage with Mr. Gluck, which took place 
when she was still quite young. It is 
said that one summer, when she was in 
the Adirondack Mountains, in New York 
State, her singing as an amateur at- 
tracted the attention of a gentleman, who 
„ . advised her to go to Signor Buzzi-Pecia 

lor lessons. This she did, but with no idea of an operatic career. 
She merely wanted to learn to sing well, and with that idea worked 
hard. In three years she had a repertory of ten operas. In 1909 
her teacher suggested that she sing f or Mr. Gatti-Casazza, general 
manager of the Metropolitan Opera House. To her surprise he 
offered her a contract for fìve years at the Metropolitan Opera 
House, which she at once accepted. 

During her first season at the celebrated institution she sang 
eleven different roles, appearing in "Boheme," "Pique Dame," 
"Stradella," "Orfeo," "Maestro di Cappella," "The Bartered 
Bride," "Faust," "Rheingold," and others. Her opportunity to 
smg "Marguerite" at Baltimore came about through the illness of 
Mme. Alda. 

Constant demands for appearances on the concert platform 
mduced Gluck, as is the case of her colleague and close friend, 
Sophie Braslau, to abandon the operatic boards and devote her 
entire attention to that fìeld. 

Possessing a tone of rare, penetrating quality, smooth and easy 
m production, and full of that "soulfulness" which is the heritage 
of the Jewish people, she is furthermore an interpreter of extraor- 
dinary intelligence, and fìnds a response among the laymen as well 
as the cognoscenti. She is particularly happy in her rendition of 
airs of the country of her adoption, and in this fìeld stands to this 
day without a peer. It has become a tradition after the presenta- 



tion of her regular program for her to seat herself at the piano and 
sing such tunes as "Annie Laurie," "My Old Kentucky Home," and 
other airs dear to American hearts. 

Alma Gluck is a woman of charm, intelligence, and culture. In 
1915, after divorcing her fìrst husband, she married the celebrated 
Russian violinist, Efrem Zimbalist, who often appeared with her 
as her accompanist. Mme. Gluck-Zimbalist is the happy mother of 
three children, the oldest of whom, a girl, was married in 1924. 
Having devoted much of her time to the education of her children, 
Mme. Gluck has for several years neglected her concert appear- 
ances, but in 1925 again appeared in New York City and on tour. 

Alma Gluck and Zimbalist make their home in New York City. 
Their home is the center of that city's aristocratic, musical, and 
cultured circles. 


Arnold GABOR, baritone of the -Metropolitan Opera House in New 
York, was born in Budapest, and studied singing in Berlin and in 
Italy, his art being a blending of two schools. 

He made his first appearance in 1912 
at the Opera in his native city, after 
which followed many appearances in 
Germany in 1915. He sang there until 
1923, when he was engaged for the Met- 
ropolitan Opera Company in New York. 

Gabor is the possessor of a beautiful 
voice. Critics declare him to be a true 
artist with a voice of genuine operatic 

His popularity is not confìned to his 
operatic roles at the Metropolitan. He 
is also in great demand as a concert 
singer in recitals throughout the 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


Henschel belongs to the group of great singers of our time excei- 
ling particularly in oratorio and concert. At the same time he is 
one of the leading conductors and composers. His powerful, sym- 
pathetic and pleasant baritone produces a particularly deep impres- 
sion in oratorio, a field in which he remains to this day almost with- 
out a peer. Henschel is hailed everywhere as being of refmed, cul- 
tured taste. 

Isidor Georg Henschel was born on February 18, 1850, in Bres- 
lau, the mother city of the Damrosches, Otto Klemperer, and other 
great musicians. From 1867 to 1870 he was at the Leipzig Conser- 
vatory, where he studied singing under Franz Gotze and theory 
with Richter. His further education Henschel received in Berlin 
under the guidance of Adolph Schulze (in singing) and Friedrich 
Kiel (in composition) . 

In 1879 he settled in London, where he became professor of 
singing at the Royal College of Music. He revealed his talents as 
conductor when he brilliantly conducted the symphony concerts in 
Boston from 1881 to 1884, after which he returned to England 
(1885) to direct the London Symphony Concerts until 1896. He 
was also first conductor of the Scottish Orchestra in Glasgow. In 
1890 he became a naturalized Britisher. His services in the cause 
of English music were duly appreciated by King George V, who 
knighted him in 1914. Sir George developed into one of the most 
cultured musicians of his generation. 

His fìrst wife was Lilian June Bailey, a popular concert singer 
(born on January 17, 1860, in Ohio; died November 5, 1901, in 
London). She was a pupil of her uncle, Chaiies Hayden, and 
Mme Viardot-Garcia, and later of her future husbancì, whom she 
married in 1881, accompanying him on her concert tours. Their 
daughter, Helen, sang soprano, but retired on her marriage to W. 
Onslow Ford. 

Following is a list of Henschel's compositions : Canon suite 
for string orchestra; Psalm 103, for chorus, soli, and orchestra; 
Stabat Mater (Birmingham Festival, 1894) ; Hamlet Music (Lon- 
don, 1892) ; the operas, "A Sea Change" (Love's Stowaway, 1884) ; 
"Frederick the Fair" and "Nubia," both performed in Dresden in 
1899; "Requiem," opus 59 (1903) ; String quartet in E flat major, 
opus 55 ; many songs f or solo and choruses, etc. 

Aside f rom musical works, Henschel also wrote Personal Recol- 
lections of Brahms (1907), and his own reminiscences, under the 
title Musings and Memories of a Musician (1918). Sir George 
Henschel has resided for many years in Scotland at Allt-na-Criche, 

Singers 407 


Hermann Jadlowker, who first appearecl at the New York Met- 
ropolitan Opera House on January 22, 1910, as Faust, was born 
in Riga in 1879, and was intencled by his father for a busi- 
ness career. This was not quite in ac- 
cordance with the views of the youth, 
who accordingly fled from Russia. He 
was then but fìfteen years of age. He 
succeeded in reaching Vienna, where he 
became a pupil of Ganse. Later he con- 
tinued his studies in Italy, and eventually 
secured an engagement at Cologne, when 
he was twenty years of age, taking a 
small part in a German opera, "The 
Night Watch of Granada." 

He later sang for a short time in 
Stettin, but first attracted attention by 
his work at Karlsruhe, where Emperor 
William heard him and invited him to 
sing at the Royal Opera House in Berlin. A contract for five years 
iresulted. This was followed by a similar contract at Vienna, 
through the help of the Grand Duke of Baden. 

Triumph followed triumph all over Germany, England, France, 
and other continental countries. 

From 1910 to 1913 he sang with the Metropolitan Opera for 
three successive seasons, gaining a reputation as one of the fore- 
most dramatic tenors that had ever reached these shores. 

Jadlowker is thoroughly schooled in the fìner ways of music 
drama. His supple fìgure and attractive face serve him well in 
romantic parts. His movements are free, his gestures intelligent, 
and he avoicìs the trite conventionalities of operatic pose. He 
truly sings, with justice to intonation, with heed to melodic design, 
with musical shapeliness of phrase, with unforced and intelligently 
ordered quality of tone. 

In 1912 Jadlowker left the Metropolitan Opera Company, hav- 
ing been engaged by the Royal Opera in Berlin. His contract was 
said to be for five years, and his salary the largest ever paid in 
Germany to a tenor. Yet it was intimated that by the terms of 
his contract he might be able to return to the Metropolitan in 1914. 
But war intervened and Jadlowker has not been in America since. 

While in New York, Jadlowker created the chief tenor parts in 
the American premières of Humperdinck's "Konigskinder" (1910) 
and Thriller's "Lobetanz" (1911). 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 


IN 1882, at a soirèe at the houses of Paul Lindau, Paul Kalisch 
sang in the presence of Adelina Patti, Nicolini, Albert Neuman, 
and others. The famous Pollini, also a guest at the soirèe, rang 
Kalisch's bell at eight o'clock the follow- 
ing morning with a five-year contract in 
his pocket, which he offered to Paul, and 
which the youth accepted immediately, 
forsaking architecture to devote himself 
to Orpheus. He promptly went to Milan, 
where he studied under Leoni, and made 
his dèbut in 1888, in the part of Edgard 
in "Lucia," in Varese. The dèbut brought 
him engagements at all the large thea- 
tres in Italy. He sang at Milan, Flor- 
ence, Venice, Rome, Naples and Barce- 
lona. Following that he went to Berlin, 
where he played Raoul in "Les Hugue- 
nots." His excellent interpretation in- 
duced von Gulsen to engage him for the 
court opera. His singing in "The Hu- 
guenots" and "Traviata" made such an impression that he was 
engaged for fìve years. In Berlin he met Lili Lehman, with whom 
he went to London. There they appeared at Her Majesty's Thea- 
tre in the parts of Florence and Alfred. They became engaged in 
London and were married in America in 1888. 

Kalisch's famous wife, who undoubt'edly had a great influence 
over her husband's artistic development, appeared during their 
early meeting in Berlin as a colorature soprano. Not till they were 
in America did she begin her career as a dramatic artist in Wag- 
ner's operas. Both wife and husband remained in the United 
States for six winter seasons, also touring the larger cities in con- 
cert, arousing everywhere great enthusiasm by their splendid voices 
and artistic singing. Upon Kalisch's return to Europe, he sang in 
Vienna, Budapest, Paris, London, Cologne, and Wiesbaden, later 
signing a contract with Julius Hoffman as singer of "heroic" parts. 
Kalisch's best roles were considered to be Tannhauser, Tristan, 
Florestan, Raoul, Otello and Eleazar. He helped considerably in 
spreading the gospel of Wagnerian opera. 

Paul Kalisch was born in Berlin on May 6, 1855. His father, 
David Kalisch, was a composer of modern couplets and farces. 

In Wiesbaden, where Kalisch often sang at court, the Emperor 
presented him with a diamond pin. He was also honored with the 
title of Kammersanger by Duke Ernst Saxen von Altenburg. 




Alexander Kipnis, the famous bass-baritone of the Chicago Civic 
Opera Company, was born in Zhitomir, Southern Russia, in 1890. 
The story of his life and his early struggles afford an interesting 
insight into the obstacles he surmounted 
before he reached his present rank among 
the great singers. Kipnis says of him- 
self : 

"My parents were very poor, but they 
gave me the best education possible un- 
der the circumstances. They were not 
musical ; in f act, music in any phase was 
unknown in our home. Until I reached 
the age of sixteen, I had not even seen a 
piano. What I did see was poverty, dis- 
tress and hunger (of which my native 
Russia can tell so many heart-rending 
tales). Hunger made me sing; hunger 
was the tyrant that brought forth the 
singer. When I was twelve years old, my father died and I was 
forced to carry on his business (he was a merchant). I could not 
endure this long. The longing for music became stronger and took 
possession of my body and soul. I ran away from home and joined 
a small Russian opera company which traveled from one province 
to another. I was happy as long as I could breathe the air of the 
theatre. I f ell in love with the daughter of the director, but it was 
an unrequited affection. My life during this period alternated be- 
tween sorrows, hunger and work — work in every branch that a 
small company demands. I was ticket-taker, wardrobe master, 
stage-hand, wigmaker, singer, and actor. Finally, the police inter- 
fered with us, and our troupe disbanded. Again I f aced hunger. I 
reached Warsaw, studied music there and sang in the choirs, not to 
become an artist, but only to earn money to live and study f urther. 
I was graduated f rom the Conservatorium as conductor. Then my 
voice was discovered. I took the fìrst train out of Warsaw, allowing 
it to assume the responsibility of my f urther fate. Its destination 
was Berlin. There I studied f our years with Grenzebach. 

"The World War broke out and I was put under arrest. In 1915 
I signed up for my fìrst engagements in Hamburg, and during five 
years there and at the Royal Opera House in Wiesbaden I gathered 
my opera experience and successes." 

After this period, Kipnis appeared in concert in Berlin. His 
first appearance created a sensation. Henceforth, he was a favorite 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

soloist at all the great concerts in Berlin. He sang under the direc- 
tion of Nikisch, Weingartner, and Furtwangler, the latter acting as 
his accompanist at a concert at the Leipzig Gewandhaus. 

In 1922, as a member of the Berlin Opera, Kipnis made his fìrst 
great tour over the United States under the auspices of the Wagner 
Festival Company, associated with Leo Blech. The New York press 
was unanimous in its praise of Kipnis as an artist of unusual ability. 
The prominent critics, among them W. J. Henderson, compared his 
voice to that of Eduard de lleszke. It was at this time that Mary 
Garden and Georgio Polacco of the Chicago Civic Opera heard the 
great baritone. Kipnis was immediately engaged for their organ- 
ization, of which he is at present one of its most valued members. 
Since his appearance with this organization he has been dividing his 
time and talent between the United States and Germany, where he 
sings every season. 

Kipnis, in reviewing his life, his childhood, his early struggles 
and hardships, and later achievements, voices the opinion that it 
was not accident which mapped out a singer's career for him. To 
use his own words, "It is never by accident that singers become 
singers. Singers are born." 

His roles with the Chicago Opera Company during the season of 
1925-26 have included Ochs in "Der Rosenkavalier," Wotan in "Die 
Walkiire," Escamillo in "Carmen," the Cardinal in "The Jewess," 
Arkel in "Pelleas et Melisande," King Henry in "Lohengrin," and 
Albert in "Werther." During the summer of 1925 he married Miss 
Mildred Levy of Chicago, daughter of Heniot Levy, the noted 

Kipnis is a great concert favorite in America and frequently 
concertizes throughout the great musical centers of both continents 
between his operatic appearances. He is frequently compared to 

After a concert appearance in San Francisco on April 24, 1925, 
the Daily Herald said that "Kipnis got and deserved an ovation for 
his four Russian folk songs: 'The Rainbow,' 'The Log,' 'The 
Night,' and the well known 'Volga Boatsong.' He revealed last 
night a far fìner artistry, a much greater depth of feeling than in 
his previous appearances. As an encore he sang Schubert's 'Seren- 
ade' and made of it a thing glorious almost beyond recognition." 

In June, 1925, Kipnis gave a series of concerts in Berlin with 
the utmost success. Later he concertized with the same results 
in Paris and other European centers. On March 18, 1926, he gave 
one of his New York recitals in Aeolian Hall and was enthusiasti- 
cally received. 

Kipnis has one of the most lovely voices now being heard either 
in concert or in opera. Its lower register is a true bass, the upper 
register is like a baritone. Its range is very wide. He sings the 



lightest and purest pianissimo as well as the strongest and heaviest 
fortissimo with equal ease and no loss of beauty. What is equally 
if not more important is that Kipnis has a real musical gift. What 
he does by way of interpretation could never be learned were the 
musicianship, the temperament, and the gift of strong feeling not 
inborn. He accomplishes the highest vocation of art, which is to 
communicate feeling. Kipnis' voice is most wonderful material 
in the most culturecl state. He has excellent taste, to which is added 
the gift of penetrating to the core of the signifìcance of his songs. 


ISA Kremer, widely known as the "International Ballad Singer," 
is a unique fìgure on the concert stage today. No other living singer 
brings so much vividness, realism, and charm to her interpreta- 
tions as does this inimitable singer. Gift- 
ed with great histrionic qualities, her 
concert presentations assume a lifelike- 
ness that is altogether lacking in the 
interpretations of her more stiff and con- 
ventional colleagues of the concert plat- 

Miss Kremer is particularly happy in 
her Jewish, Italian, and Russian songs, 
although she is equally great in the other 
languages in which she thrills her audi- 
ences. She cannot help feeling at home 
in every language, cannot help respond- 
ing to the throb of every nation's tune. 
Odessa, her native town, has a tradition 
that is an embroidery of many cultures. There was a time when 
even the street-tablets there were printed in Italian as well as Rus- 
sian; the theater was Italian, the fìrst newspaper French. 

No wonder then that her singing carries her vast audiences in 
all parts of the world back to their native lands. Possessed of a 
voice that is not of extraordinary range or volume, she succeeds in 
extracting so much feeling from the music by her profound grasp 
of its signifìcance. No "golden voiced" prima-donna receives 
greater applause. 

At the age of seventeen Isa Kremer lef t Odessa f or Italy, where 
she studied in Milan with the famous Professor Ronzi. Four years 
later she made her dèbut as Mimi in "La Boheme." Called back to 
Russia, she sang the title role in "Yolande," Tatiana in "Eugene 
Onegin," Marta in "The Czar's Bride," Madame Butterfly, 
Manon, etc. 

412 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In 1916 at the apogee of her success she abandoned the opera 

for the concert fìeld. Her dèbut in Moscow made her celebrated all 

over Russia. Her career since then has been one repetition after 
another of the fìrst success. She left Russia in 1919, sang in many 
European capitals, and came to America in October, 1922. Those 
who were in Carnegie Hall on that occasion will never forget this 
marvelous and unique afternoon. The critics declared her a true 
artist with a voice of real operatic quality, rich and expressive. 

Isa Kremer is now living in New York, where she is one of the 
most popular artists before the public. 


A pupil of Marcella Sembrich and a devoted admirer of the lovely 
art of that great singer, Hulda Lashanska, is accounted more than 
any other singer of our day the best example of the fìne traditions 
of the art of bel canto. 

Like her great teacher, Madame 
Lashanska has thoroughly studied the 
ancient classical airs of the older Italian 

She has a voice of pure and limpid 
beauty and fine musicianship, recalling 
Mme Emma Eames. 

Lashanska's recitals in New York, 
which are an annual event, are always a 
signal for the outpouring of one of New 
York's choicest audiences. Musicians 
and singers are there in f ull force, paint- 
ers, sculptors, writers, and men of the 
professions as well as the most distin- 
guished amateurs in music that the city possesses. No singer since 
Sembrich has been able to gather an audience of such quality. 

This brilliant American soprano has sung with most of the 
principal orchestras of America, for she is one of the rare lyric 
sopranos whose repertoire is such that she can "fit into" a sym- 
phony programme. It so happened that Lashanska's appearance 
with the Philadelphia Orchestra was at the same pair of concerts 
where Mengelberg was the conductor, and even the excitement 
caused by that notable leader did not prevent due credit being given 
to the lovely art of the singer. 

Hulda Lashanska was born in New York of well-to-do parents 
and was fortunate in having no fìnancial struggles. But she had 



nearly all the other difficulties which beset the paths of ambitious 
would-be singers. Her parents objected to her becoming a musi- 
cian. As a young girl she had visions of a career as a pianist and 
worked arduously for several years to that end. With the rapid 
development of her voice, she felt she would prefer to become a 
singer, and the piano was degraded from a "major" to a "minor" 
in her list of studies. But the work she did as a girl was not 
wasted. It gave her a thorough foundation in musicianship which 
has been of inestimable value to her in her art. This musicianship 
is apparent in every measure she sings. 

Hulda Lashanska is thoroughly American, being trained en- 
tirely in this country. The girl was the favorite pupil of the great 
diva Sembrich, who gave a private concert in Aeolian Hall for "my 
best pupil." 

That was really the beginning of Lashanska's brilliant career. 
The next season she made her formal dèbut in New York and was 
most warmly received. Before another season had passed she was 
singing with the principal orchestras and giving song recitals to 
crowded houses — was in fact a great artist, secure in her position. 

Hulda Lashanska was f orced to absent herself f rom the concert 
stage for nearly a year. But during this time she never ceased to 
study and to practice. On March of 1925 she made an appearance 
as soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski con- 
ducting, in Philadelphia. 

Lashanska brings to the stage an uncommon charm and grace 
of manner. There is a refinement, a delicacy of feeling, and an 
artistry which is f ully up to the standards of the most outstanding 
singers of today. Her voice is clear and fresh, and she has the 
vim and fervor of youth. 


Pauline Lucca, who was in her days a star of the very first mag- 
nitude in the operatic firinament, was aptly designated by Oettin- 
ger a "prima-donna di primo cartello." So great was her fame 
and so mighty her powers, that Meyerbeer composed especially 
for her his immortal and perhaps most popular opera, "Le Pro- 
phète." It was undoubtedly due to Lucca's great vocal and histri- 
onic powers that this opera at once established itself in the favor 
of countless audiences. To this day it remains the favorite French 
opera of the modern repertory. 

Pauline Lucca was born in Vienna on April 25, 1841, and re- 
ceived her vocal and musical training from Uffmann and Levy, in 
Vienna. For practical experience, she joined the chorus of the 

414 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Hofoper, while continuing her studies. In 1859, she was leader of 
the Jungfern chorus in Weber's "Freischutz." She fìrst appeared 
in solo parts at Olmiitz, during the same year, and immediately 
afterwards appeared in Prague. In 1861 she was given a life con- 
tract with the Berlin Hofoper, and soon became the favorite of the 
Prussian capital. 

Lucca's best roles were in "Don Juan," "Fra Diavolo," "Car- 
men," and "L'Africaine." In 1869 she married the Baron von 
Rhaden, but divorced him two years afterwards, marrying a cer- 
tain von Mahlhoffen. 

Lucca broke her Berlin Hofoper contract in 1872, whereupon 
she played and concertized for many years with the utmost success 
in England, America, Paris, St. Petersburg, etc, until 1882. From 
1874 to 1889 she belonged to the Vienna Hofoper, of which she was 
an honorable member. 

The great diva died in Vienna on February 28, 1908. 


LlLLl Leiimann, the famous German dramatic soprano, was born 
in Wtirzburg, Germany, on November 24, 1843. She was taught 
singing by her mother (nèe Low, of Jewish origin), who was for- 
merly a harp player and prima donna at 
Cassel, under Spohr, and was the orig- 
inal heroine of several operas written by 
that master. 

Lilli Lehmann's position in the oper- 
atic world was not won suddenly. She 
made her fìrst appearance in Prague as 
the First Boy in the "Zauberfiòte," after 
which she fìlled engagements in Danzig 
(1868) and Liepzig (1870). In the lat- 
ter year she also appeared at the Berlin 
Opera House.- In 1876 she was appoint- 
ed Imperial Chamber-Singer (Kammer- 

She now began to sing in Wagner's 
operas, taking the parts of Woglinde and Helmwige. She sang the 
bird music in Wagner's trilogy at Bayreuth. In 1880 she made a 
successful appearance in England as Violetta in "Traviata," and 
again as Philine in "Mignon." She also sang at Her Majesty's 
Theatre for two seasons. In 1884 she went to Covent Garden, and 
made a substantial success as Isolde. The following year she vis- 
ited the United States, and for several years was frequently heard 

Singers 415 

in German Opera, acquiring a great reputation. In 1892 she was 
taken ill and returned to Germany. At that time the condition of 
her health was such that it was feared she would never sing again, 
but in 1896 she reappeared and was engaged to sing in Bayreuth, 
where she electrifìed the world by her magnificent performances. 
One of the critics wrote regarding the event: "Lehmann is the 
greatest dramatic singer alive. Despite the fact that her voice is 
no longer fresh, her art is consummate, 
her tact is so delicate, and her appre- 
ciation of the dramatic situation so accu- 
rate, that to see her simply in repose is 
keen pleasure." 

Like all the greatest Wagnerian sing- 
ers, her reputation was made in work of 
a very different nature. It wasa, indeed, 
because of her ability to sing music of 
the Italian school that she was so high- 
ly successful in the Wagner roles, and 
it may be said that her long career is 
sufficient refutation of the oft-repeated 
assertion that Wagner operas rapidly 
wear out a singer's voice. 
In 1888, Lilli Lehmann married Paul Kalisch of Berlin, a highly 
regarded tenor. The marriage took place after an engagement of 
several years and was carried out in a most informal manner in 
New York. Kalisch telegraphed one afternoon to a clergyman to 
the effect that he was coming at fìve o'clock to be married. The 
clergyman held himself in readiness, the couple arrived promptly, 
and the knot was tied. During the few years of retirement, Frau 
Lehmann-Kalisch resided in Berlin, where she devoted her time 
to teaching the vocal art, but since her Bayreuth appearance in 
1896, she has revisited America, and renewed her former triumphs. 

Walter Damrosch, then a young man, and assistant conductor 
of the New York Metropolitan Opera House, is responsible for first 
bringing Lehmann to America in 1885. A close friendship be- 
tween the conductor and the prima donna ensued, and Damrosch 
freely acknowledges in My Musical Life his debt of gratitude for 
the many points of advice she gave him. He says in part: 

"Lilli Lehmann, at that time forty years of age, had sung prin- 
cipally the coloratura roles, and with these had made a great local 
reputation throughout Germany and Austria. She had sung the 
First Rhine Maiden at Bayreuth in 1876, and an occasional Elsa in 
"Lohengrin," but it was not until she came to America that she 
began to sing the Brunhildes and Isoldes which made her one of 
the greatest dramatic sopranos of her time. Curiously enough, she 
insisted on making her fìrst appearance in America as Carmen, a 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

role to which she gave a dramatic, tragic, and rather sombre sig- 
nifìcance, but in which the lighter, coquettish touches were perhaps 
not suffìciently emphasized. 

"Great credit belongs to her for her indomitable will and per- 
severance. Nature had not given her originally a dramatic voice. 
It was a wonderfully clear and high coloratura soprano, but by 
persistent practice she developed an ample middle and lower regis- 
ter and made it equal to the emotional demands of an Isolde or a 

"Her acting was majestic. In the first act of "Tristan" and in 
the second act of "Gòtterdàmmerung" her anger was like forked 
flashes of lightning. I suppose that her technique of acting would 
be called old-fashioned today, as those were the days of statuesque 
poses, often maintained without change for long stretches of time. 

"On the afternoon of days that she had to sing "Isolde," she 
always sang through the entire role in her rooms with full voice, 
just to make sure that she could do it in the evening. Compare this 
to those delicate prima-donnas who, on the days when they have to 
sing, often speak only in whispers in order that their precious 
vocal cords may not be alfected. . . . 

"Having achieved so much through her own energy and tri- 
umphed over so many obstacles, she thought that she could similar- 
ly transform her husband, Paul Kalisch, from a lyric to a dramatic 
tenor. How she worked over and harassed that poor man! She 
certainly was the stronger of the two, and while his entire inclina- 
tion was toward easy and delightful companionship with others, 
she forced him to study and to sing for hours at a stretch, but with 
only partial success as far as his transformation into a real dra- 
matic and 'heroic' Wagner tenor was concerned. It simply was not 
in his nature to become 'heroic,' and when, as sometimes happened, 
he committed some blunder, some false entrance while singing 
Siegfried in the "Gòtterdàmmerung," the glances which Brunhilde 
cast upon him on the stage were so terrible, so pregnant with pun- 
ishment to come, that from my conductor stand I used to pity the 
poor man thus compelled to swim around in a pond which was so 
much larger than he wanted ; and often after such a performance 
I would fìnd him moodily seated all alone at a table in the restaurant 
of the hotel with a pint bottle of champagne before him and with 
no desire to go upstairs and face the anger of his Brunhilde 

One of the brightest and musicianly personalities in the fìeld of 
her calling, Lilli Lehmann has lived to see a ripe old age. Sur- 
rounded by pupils from all parts of the world, in her home near 
Berlin, where she now lives, Lilli Lehmann perpetuates her art in 
the young aspirants. One of her pupils was Marion Telva, the 



successful young singer of the Metropolitan Opera House, New 
York. She has also published her methocls in her standard works 
on the voice. Her book Hoto to Sing is considered among the most 
valuable works in that fìeld. This book, which was originally writ- 
ten in German, has been translated into English, and has since its 
fìrst appearance in 1902, seen many editions and translations. In 
1913 she wrote another equally valuable book, My Way. 

Although Lilli Lehmann's father was a basso of some standing, 
it was from her mother that she inherited her great musical and 
histrionic gifts, together with the Jewish blood. Lilli Lehmann 
speaks in her reminiscences of those far-off years in the following 
manner : 

"I was brought up in Prague, where I made my dèbut at 
eighteen years of age. My mother was my fìrst teacher and con- 
stant companion. She was herself a dramatic soprano, well known 
as Maria Low, and my f ather, too, was a singer. 

"It was in the 'Magic Flute' that I appeared in one of the 
lighter roles ; but two weeks later, during the perf ormance, the dra- 
matic soprano was taken ill, and I then and there went on with her 
role, trusting to my memory, as I had heard it so often. My mother, 
who was in the audience, and knew I had never studied the part, 
nearly fainted when she saw me come on the stage in the role. 

"I appeared not only in many operas, but also as an actress in 
many plays. In those days opera singers were expected to be pro- 
fìcient in the dramatic, as well as the musical side of their art, and 
were called upon to perform in all the great tragedies. But nowa- 
days this would be impossible, since the operatic repertoire has 
become so tremenclous. The divine art, like nature, has its various 
works, and Wagner and Bellini represent two extremes." 


Anna Meitschik, the Russian contralto, ha's an unusually deep 
voice, so deep that she has even sung baritone airs. It is related 
of her that once, at the fair at Nijny-Novgorod, where a perform- 
ance of Rubinstein's opera "Deraon" was to be given, the baritone 
to whom the title role had been assigned was taken ill. Miss 
Meitschik sang the part and saved the performance. 

Anna Meitschik was born in St. Petersburg on October 25, 1878, 
and was graduated from the Gymnasium at the age of fìfteen. A 
year later she entered the Conservatory, where she studied voice- 
culture under Carolina Fermi-Giraldoni. At the age of twenty she 
began her artistic career in Odessa and Tiflis as an operatic singer, 
and shortly afterwards appeared in Kiev, Kharkov, and Moscow. 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

Meitschik has a repertoire of over fìfty standard operas, all of 
which she performed in Russia and abroad in the course of her long 
career. Her favorite roles are Delila, Fides, and Martha in "Kho- 
vanstchina." From 1907 to 1914 she sang leading parts at La 
Scala (Milan), Lisbon, the San Carlo Company of America, and 
the Metropolitan Opera in New York, under Toscanini and Mahler. 
In the latter organization she made fifty-fìve appearances, among 
them Tschaikowsky's "Pique Dame," the Niebelungen Ring of Wag- 
ner, "II Trovatore." 

Since 1912 Meitschik has devoted herself principally to concert, 
oratorio singing, and teaching, and is at present in New York, 
where she maintains a vocal studio. 

Mme Meitschik's interpretations of the Countess in "Pique 
Dame" is one of the foundation stones of her reputation in Europe 
as well as America. She is a thorough artist, and brings an indi- 
viduality into her representations that makes them quite unforget- 
table. Her voice, as well as her acting, is full of rich and individ- 
ual character. 


Jean Louis Lassalle is regarded by some historians as being of 
German extraction (his father's or grandfather's name has been 
Lasal), but he was thoroughly acclimatized in Paris. His name is 
linked to the grand period of the Paris 
Opera, when Faurè, Roge, and other 
great singers held sway over the operatic 
boards. Lassalle, the possessor of a great 
baritone voice, was a product of the Ital- 
ian school of bel canto, which enabled 
him, like Battistini, to sing to a very ad- 
vanced age. He was a splendid actor as 

Lassalle was born on December 14, 
J847, in Lyons, and made his debut in 
Liege in 1869, as St. Brie in "Manon," 
and sang in Paris for twenty-three 
years, creating many new roles, and oc~ 
casionally making tours to other parts of 
Europe and to America. In Berlin he made a sensation in the parts 
of Vasca da Gama in "L'Africana," "Don Juan," and others. In 
1903 he became professor of singing at the Paris Conservatoire. 

This great singer who conquered both continents with his beau- 
tiful bel canto, died in Paris on September 7, 1909. 




Alas, so short-lived is the fame of the great singer that even the 
name of Pasta, the paragon of dramatic singing of the nineteenth 
century, who has had more written of her divine art than any of 
her contemporaries, is now but a dead letter, known to but a few 
students and lovers of singing. So supreme was the art of this 
singer, who unfortunately had but a short career, the peak lasting 
only ten years, that when on the wane of her career she gave a 
farewell concert in London, the scene of some of her greatest 
triumphs in 1850, Mme Viardot, daughter of the famous Manuel 
Garcia, exclaimed, with tears in her eyes: "Her singing is like 
the 'Last Supper' of da Vinci — a wreck, but still the greatest in 
the world!" 

Giuditta Negri is known to history as Pasta, by reason of her 
marriage to an obscure singer of that name. She was born of 
Jewish parents in Como, near Milan, Italy, in 1798. Little is 
known of her early life and surroundings except that she studied 
first under the chapel master, and fìve years later, at the age of 
fifteen, entered the Conservatory of Milan, where she studied under 

Pasta made her dèbut in Brescia, singing a little later in Parma 
and Leghorn, without arousing any enthusiasm for her voice or 
art. In 1816 she was in Paris as one of Catalani's "puppets," and 
in 1817 in London with Feodor; but she made no impression in 
either city and returned to Italy, practically as unknown as when 
she left it. 

After two years of hard study, in 1819-20, she sang ih Milan 
and Rome with success, and in 1821-22 appeared in Paris, where 
even the most critical now accepted her as the greatest dramatic 
singer of the day. Her principal roles were in "Otello" by Rossini, 
"Taneredi" by the same master, "Romeo et Juliette" by Zingarelli 
(in which she took the part of Romeo), "Nina" by Paisiello, and 
"Medea" by Mager, in all of which she was held to be incom- 

In the tragic parts she had a capacity to thrill her audiences 
profoundly. The majesty of her carriage and the sweep of her ges- 
tures were superb. She was the "classic artist" par excellence. 
For six years she alternated between London and Paris, then re- 
turned to Italy. Bellini wrote for her "La Sonnambula" (1831) 
and "Norma" (1832), in both of which she achieved memorable 
successes. Into every part she played she poured her creative 
powers so generously that her impersonations made the roles seem 

420 Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

In 1833 she returned to Paris, and won a fresh triumph in 
"Anna Bolena," which Donizetti had specially written for her. 
The capacity always to express the intentions of the composer was 
Pasta's to an unusual degree and raised her above all the singers of 
her time, even above Malibran, who possessed a greater voice and 
was her only rival. 

A strange and impressive parallel can be drawn between those 
two singers who dominated the operatic stages of Europe during 
the same time. Malibran, endowed with a natural voice and musi- 
cianship in fabulous measure, squandered her gifts on unimpres- 
sive ornament and selfìsh display, while Pasta, poorly endowed 
vvith scant gifts, lifted herself from mediocrity to heights in her 
art never before approached. 

In 1829, Pasta bought a villa near Lake Como, which became 
her permanent home. There, surrounded by friends aild family, 
she lived quietly until her death on April 1, 1865. 


Maurice Renaud, considered one of the most outstanding singers 
in the woiid, was born at Boreau in 1862. He studied at the Con- 
servatoire in Paris, then under Gevaert and Dupont at Brussels. 

His fìrst appearance was made at the 
Theatre de la Monnaie, Brussels. He re- 
mained in the latter city for ten years, 
occasionally making visits elsewhere in 
the interims of his engagements. 

On October 12, 1890, Renaud made 
his dèbut as Karnac in "Le Roi d'Ys" at 
the Opera Comique, Paris, and the fol- 
lowing year at the Grand Opera as Ne- 
lusko, having previously, in Brussels, 
created the roles of the high priest ancl 
Hamilcar in Reyer's "Sigurd" and 
"Salammbo" respectively. He was en- 
gaged from 1883 to 1890 in Brussels. 
Telramund, Wolfram, De Nevers, 
Beckmesser, Iago, Hamlet, Scarpia, Athanael, Rigoletto, Valentine, 
Herod, Escamillo, etc, are some of the numerous roles he is said 
to have acquired. 

In 1897 he was a favorite at Covent Garden. and in 1907 at the 



Manhattan Opera House, New York, under Oscar Hammerstein. 

Renaud's voice is of full, rich baritone quality, capable of wide 
and very adroitly modulated range of tonal color, from delicacy 
to power, from lyric smoothness to piercing poignancy. His sing- 
ing arid his characterization in opera seem to be the result of long 
and penetrating study and of adroit and subtle imagination. His 
is always a singularly acute intelligence. Every detail is polished 
and adjusted to its due place in the musical and emotional whole 
of the part of song. There is romance as well as reflection in his 

Among his most famous impersonations are Mefistofele in 
Boito's opera of the same name, Rigoletto in Verdi's opera, the 
monk Athanael in Massenet's "Thais," and Scarpia in Puccini's 

The following criticism of Renaud's interpretations of the role 
of Scarpia and his comparison with that of Scotti will be most in- 
teresting: "The essential difference is the stress that Renaud lays 
on the cruelty of Scarpia ; Scotti, a hard, unscrupulous, passionate 
man, who can be cruel as he can be almost anything else that is evil, 
when occasion and disposition prompt. To Renaud's Scarpia, 
cruelty has become a second nature and an essential pleasure. He 
is cruel for the perverse sensual pleasure of cruelty. Renaud's 
Scarpia suggests a man of far more acute mind than Scotti's." 

When the ill-informed and provincial Heinrich Conried suc- 
ceeded Maurice Grau at the Metropolitan Opera House he found 
in his desk a contract which would have bound Renaud to that 
theatre for a number of years, but, being ignorant of operatic 
affairs and of those pertaining to the French stage in particular, 
he had never heard of Renaud, and let the contract go by default. 
Oscar Hammerstein, better inf ormed, sought Renaud and kept him 
as one of the chief ornaments of his company as long as he con- 
tinued to manage the Manhattan Opera House, New York. 

One of the leading critics in New York wrote of him in 1910: 
"There are as many Renauds as the actor has characters. . . . 
He is a singer by dint of intelligence and knowledge as well as by 
grace of voice and labor. . . . He is in possession of an exalted 
speech that often is more poignant and vivid than the spoken 

The Musical America of January 4, 1908, wrote: "The out- 
standing feature of the week at the Manhattan Opera House was 
the revival of 'Don Giovanni,' with Maurice Renaud as the wicked 


Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race 

heart-crusher. This was one of the most remarkable impersona- 
tions the French baritone gave in New York, and once again it was 
an impressive demonstration of the singing actor's art." The same 
journal wrote a month later (February 15, 1908) the following 
on the occasion of Renaud's farewell appearance at the Manhattan 
Opera House before leaving for his French engagements: 

"The departure of Maurice Renaud, the French baritone, who 
made his farewell appearance at the Manhattan Opera House last 
week, has robbed New York of one of the brightest lights of its 
operatic stage. All of the New York critics, including the most 
hypercritical of them, have united in acclaiming the art of this 
distinguished singing actor with a unanimity they so rarely exhibit 
as to make it of itself the most eloquent tribute an artist could 


Giacomo Rimini, the eminent Italian baritone of the Chicago 
Opera Company, was born in Verona, Italy, in 1889. Toscanini 
chose him for the title role in Verdi's "Falstaff," which he con- 
ducted at Milan several years ago. Be- 
fore joining the ChicagO' Opera Associa- 
tion, he was a member of the Dal Verme 
Company in Milan. After making his 
dèbut in his native city, he sang in the 
opera houses of Padua, Roviga, and 
other cities of Italy. His success led to 
engagements in Venice, Palermo, Naples, 
and Rome. 

For several seasons Rimini has ap- 
peared at the Colon Theatre in Buenos 
Aires. With the Chicago Grand Opera 
Company, Rimini has scored a big suc- 
cess in "Rigoletto," "II Barbiere di 
Siviglia," "Falstaff," "Pagliacci," and 
other roles of the Italian school. 

During the summer of 1917 he was 
immensely successful in Mexico City. Critics have declared him 
one of the best interpreters of "Falstaff" ever seen on the operatic 
stage. He is the possessor of a sonorous voice, somewhat marred 
by a vibrato. He is a good actor, and shows a fìery temperament 
in the characters he portrays. 

With his wife, the famous Rosa Raisa, he often gives joint re- 
citals, singing arias and duets, 

i and fìiacomo Rimiti 




"Once upon a time there was a little girl who wanted to be a prima 
donna. She was very, very poor, but a kind lady came along and 
gave her the money to go to Italy. She went to